Syrian troops sweep into key Damascus suburb

Last Updated: Sat, Jul 12, 2014 15:00 hrs

Damascus, July 12 (IANS) The Syrian army has advanced into a key Damascus suburb, completely surrounding all militants in the area, a military official said Saturday.

The eastern town of Mleiha in the countryside of the capital Damascus has been captured by the Syrian troops, and surrounded about 400 fighters from the Nusra Front inside that area, the military official told Xinhua.

A series of "intensive and precise" operations carried out by the Syrian army, which struck a siege around the area Friday and cut their supply lines, the official said.

The armed militant groups were trapped in Mleiha after the seige.

Mleiha is deemed as strategically important by the militants due to its proximity to the capital.

The Syrian troops has eliminated many "terrorists", many of whom are foreigners, at the outskirts of Mleiha.

Meanwhile, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the Syrian government forces shelled parts of the Mleiha orchards overnight, causing injuries.