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Thursday, June 30

Fog of war Aleppo

FARS reported yesterday:
The Syrian army's artillery units, for their part, opened heavy fire at Castello supply line of militants and cut off the road.
SouthFront reported yesterday: 
The situation remains tense in and around Aleppo City. After the liberation of the Mallah Farms, the Syrian Army troops are now deployed in only 1,5 km from the militants’ last supply line to Aleppo City – the Castello road. This poses a significant threat to Al Nusra and its allies in Aleppo. 
If pro-government forces are able to cut off the Castello road, the militants will be besieged in the northeastern part of the city without any supplies.
Nonetheless, the recent attempts of pro-government forces, supported by Russian fighter jets, to develop momentum have not led to any gains yet. In turn, militants are consolidating efforts for a large counteroffensive to recapture the strategic area and defend the strategic supply line.
Also, FARS headlined their report that the SAA coalition had captured "over 60 percent of Al-Malaah [Mallah] Farms," which doesn't mean they'd "liberated" it as SouthFront reported, although it's possible the SouthFront report was filed hours after the FARS one.

As to SANA's report on the Battle for Castello Road -- Castello Road who? Nothing about Al-Malaah or Castello Road at the official Syrian government website as of 1:30 AM EDT on the battle -- indeed no mention of SAA operations in Aleppo.  However, they have a very nice sitrep (June 28) of fighting in regions other than Aleppo.  

To return to FARS, the Iranian site reported yesterday:

Syrian Army at Gates of Jamiat Al-Zahra Town in Aleppo

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Syrian army and popular forces advanced to the nearby areas of Jamiat al-Zahra town in Western Aleppo, a field source said.
"The Syrian army, supported by the Syrian and Russian fighter jets, advanced towards Jamiat al-Zahra town, the industrial centers and the road which links the Western Aleppo to Jamiat al-Zahra and the surroundings of the two towns of Qabtan al-Jabal and Dar al-Izza," the source said on Wednesday.
Noting that the Syrian troops have reached Rasoul Azam grand mosque, the source said that this region is the main target of the terrorist groups since it is the gate of Aleppo from the West and they make their upmost attempts to advance towards it.
The source added that the terrorist groups have made efforts to advance towards Jamiat al-Zahra town by special operations, blowing up a tunnel and destroying several buildings in Western Aleppo but their attempts were foiled by the army and popular forces.
In a relevant development in Aleppo, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) continued to advance against the ISIL in the Southwestern districts of the town of Manbij in Northeastern Aleppo, capturing more strategic centers in the town, SDF's spokesman said Wednesday.
"The SDF, mainly comprising of Kurdish fighters, beat the ISIL back from Manbij traffic police building after hours of on non-stop clashes," Shirwan Darvish said, adding, "The SDF fighter, meantime, entered two neighborhoods of al-Karameh and al-Hazaweneh."
He further added that the SDF fighters are now engaged in fierce clashes with the ISIL.  [END REPORT]

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