After several straight days of gains in and around Aleppo Province, the Syrian military is suffering a setback today, with ISIS forces capturing the village of Khanaser and contesting control over a key desert road being used by the military as their primary supply route into Aleppo.
Rebels have long contested the main highway from Damascus to Aleppo, and the Syrian military has used the desert road as an alternative, but with ISIS’ latest push they appear to be making that route another dangerous path into the important northern city.
The Syrian military reported that the road has been effectively closed for the past two days by the fighting, and that they are amid an ongoing offensive aimed to recover full control of the road. In the meantime, the offensive around the city itself is likely to be slowed.
Syria seemed to be trying to wrap up a big offensive in Aleppo before the pending ceasefire, but this seems increasingly doubtful. At the same time, the ceasefire explicitly excludes ISIS, so they can continue fighting ISIS even after it takes place.
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