DAMASCUS, June 26 (Xinhua) -- The Syrian army on Tuesday captured key areas in the southern province of Daraa, as part of the military offensive against the rebels in the south of the country, official media reported.
The army captured the al-Lajat area in the northeastern countryside of Daraa, and the town of Busr al-Harir in the eastern countryside of the key province, reported the War Media, the media wing of the Syrian army and its allies.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a monitor group based in London, also confirmed the capture of Busr al-Harir, saying this progress has enabled the Syrian army to link areas under its control in the eastern countryside of Daraa with areas in the western countryside of nearby Sweida Province.
This victory came backed by "hundreds of Russian airstrikes" on the rebel-held areas in Daraa, the pro-rebel watchdog added.
Since launching the first stage of its military operations in the south last week, the Syrian army has been focusing on recapturing Busr al-Harir area for its logistical significance as the area lies between the government-controlled parts in Daraa and adjacent Sweida Province.
The battle in southern Syria involves areas in the countryside of Daraa, Sweida as well as Quneitra Province near the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.
The Syrian army moved to liberate rebel-held areas in the south after completely securing the capital Damascus.