Syrian government troops continue mop-up operations against foreign-sponsored militants on the outskirts of the capital, Damascus.
The army on Tuesday took over key areas in the suburbs of the industrial town of Adra near Damascus. A large number of militants were killed during the operation.
The al-Qaeda-linked militants have been involved in a series of kidnappings and executions in the area since they captured Adra earlier this month.
The Syrian army has been fighting against the militants for several weeks to secure the areas near Damascus.
It has also recently conducted successful clean-up operations across the country, inflicting heavy losses on the militants.
A recent British defense study showed that about 100,000 militants, fragmented into 1,000 groups, are fighting in Syria against the government and people.
The extracts of the study by defense consultancy IHS Jane’s were published on September 16.
IHS Jane’s estimates that some 10,000 militants are fighting for groups affiliated with al-Qaeda such as the al-Nusra Front and the rest fight for different militant groups.
The analysis also said that a large number of extremists from foreign countries are also active in Syria.
Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since March 2011. According to reports, the Western powers and their regional allies — especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey — are supporting the militants operating inside Syria.
According to the United Nations, more than 100,000 people have been killed and a total of 7.8 million of others displaced due to the violence.