Sept. 9 (UPI) -- The Syrian Arab Army reclaimed several villages and a key oil field as part of intensive operations against Islamic State hideouts.
The Syrian Army struck out of the recently reclaimed city of Ash-Shula to secure the Thayyem oil field from IS forces and continue its advance toward the southwest entrance to the city of Deir Ezzor, Al-Masdar News reported.
Following the move, Syrian forces can add additional pressure to IS positions between Deir Ezzor city and the Deir Ezzor military airport.
The Syrian army reached the western outskirts of the city on Tuesday after Islamic State defenses collapsed.
In addition to securing the oil field, the Syrian Army also took control of several villages in the Homs province -- including Um Sahrij, al-Harsh, Alam Sharqi, Kherbit Jeb Habel and Kherbit al-Haiwaniyeh, the government-run Syrian Arab News Agency said.
An army official said the operations killed a number of IS terrorists, as well as destroying their weapons and equipment.