CAIRO – At least 47 Syrian government troops and Islamist fighters were killed during the last 24 hours as fighting hit the north-eastern outskirts of the capital city of Damascus, a British war monitor reported on Monday.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that, of those killed, at least 26 were members of forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, including three officers.
On the opposite side, at least 21 militiamen were killed, two of whom committed suicide car bombings.
Several factions took part in the clashes, including Tahrir al-Sham (the armed alliance that includes the former Syrian branch of al-Qaida, with other groups), Ahrar al-Sham and al-Rahman Legion.
Tahrir al-Sham announced on Sunday the beginning of an offensive in the Damascene neighborhood of Jobar, in the northeast and near the old part of Damascus.
Nevertheless, the government troops have launched a counter-offensive in the last few hours in areas which were dominated by opponents.
Warplanes carried out 10 strikes on Monday in Jobar, which is also the target of artillery shots.
Meanwhile, Syrian military sources told the official SANA news agency that military units regained control of all points which the former al-Qaeda affiliated group and its allies had infiltrated around the al-Maamel area, north of Jobar.
The sources explained that the soldiers destroyed barracks, ammunition and car bombs of their opponents.
March 15 marked the sixth anniversary of the beginning of the conflict in the Arab country, which has caused more than 321,000 deaths.