A significant retreat for the “Islamic State” organization caused by the continuous collapse in battlefronts and the large withdrawals it carried out
The Syrian military scene has not remained the same recently, the field events started to accelerate more recently so much that they changed the distribution of forces on the ground; from the regime forces supported by the Russian forces and the loyal gunmen of Syrian and non-Syrian nationality, to the “Islamic State” organization, the Syria Democratic Forces supported by the International Coalition, the rebel and Islamic factions and Hayyaat Tahrir Al-Sham, the Turkish-backed factions operating in “Euphrates Shield” Operation Forces, the US-backed factions and Jaysh Khalid Ibn al-Walid which swore Allegiance to the “Islamic State” organization, the rank of power and influence has flipped.
The majority of the continuous military operations were confined to Homs, Deir Ezzor Province and the southern countryside of Al-Hasakah, and these operations have contributed in collapsing the “Islamic State” organization more, pushing the organization to carry out large and massive withdrawals of areas estimated at thousands of square kilometers, and these areas have entered under the control of the regime forces and militiamen loyal to them of Syrian and non-Syrian nationalities; as well as under the control of the Syria Democratic Forces, where the “Islamic State” organization which in mid-2015 it used to control more than half of Syria’s area with more than 50%; turns to an organization controls an area of 14816 km2 which is 8% of the Syrian territory, and now this organization only controls one city which is al-Bokamal and also it controls towns and villages in the countryside of Deir Ezzor and Al-Hasakah as well as several villages and a desert in the eastern countryside of Homs, amid violent and continuous attacks to terminate its presence inside the Syrian territory. Less than 1% of the inhabited areas inside Syrian territory remains under the control of the organization.
While the regime, which used to control, at the end of 2015, about 22% of the entire Syrian territory, which is 185180 square kilometers, has become the power that control the largest area in Syria as it imposes control over an area of about 52.7% of the geographical area of Syria with an area of more than 97540 square kilometers. The regime exists in the center of the provinces of Damascus. Aleppo, Homs, Hama, Latakia, Tartous, Suwaidaa, Daraa , Hasaka, Deir Ezzor, and Quneitra, and the regime forces completely control Tartous province, and almost control the provinces of Suwaidaa and Latakia and it also control large parts of the provinces of Damascus, Rif Dimashq, Aleppo, Hama, and Homs, and parts of the provinces of Daraa and Quneitra, while the regime forces has no presence at all in Idlib province except for the presence of their militants allied to them in Kafriya and al-Fu’aa, while the regime forces’ presence in Hasaka is limited to several positions in the cities of Hasaka and Qameshly and its vicinity, while the regime exists in large parts in the southern, western, southwestern countryside of Raqqa, in addition to its control over parts of Deir Ezzor city and positions and military barracks in its vicinity. The regime forces and their allied militiamen lost about 117000 of their members who were killed during the ongoing battles for the 80th month in a row.
As the Syria Democratic Forces, of which the YPG is their main pillar, have become the 2nd influential power in terms of their areas of control of the geographical area of Syria, as the Syria Democratic Forces became in control of a geographical area of about 47100 square kilometers of the Syrian territory (about 25.4%) after they managed, during the past months, to achieve large advancement, where the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitored the large advancement of the People’s Protections Units (YPG) and the Syria Democratic Force, which was achieved after the intensive support of the International Coalition’s warplanes and advisors, in addition to the military reinforcement delivered consecutively and in large amounts to the Syria Democratic Forces, and were distributed to their areas of control that are extending from the Syrian border to the western countryside of Manbij, including Raqqa and parts of Deir Ezzor, in addition to their control over the city of Aleppo and Afrin area and other villages extending from Deir Jamal to al-Shala area in the northeastern countryside of Aleppo.
However, the rebel and Islamic factions, Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham, Turkmenistan Islamic Party, and other factions include Jihadist fighters, which used to control large areas of the Syrian territory, have declined in many areas, where their controlled areas estimated to 13.7% of the areas of control in the Syria, with a geographical area reached more than 25470 of the entire area of Syria. Within the total percent and the whole areas controlled by the factions, the “Euphrates Shield” Operation Factions and the Turkish forces control an area of more than 2250 square kilometers, which is about 1.22%, while the West and US-backed factions operating in the Syrian Desert in the area extending from al-Tanf – Kharbat al-Shahmi crossing to the north of Kharbat al-Zakaf, in which a camp of these factions is set up, control an area of about 3550 square kilometers, which is about 1.91 percent of the geographical area of Syria. The factions, with the declining of the “Islamic State” organization, have become the third influential power in term of the controlled areas in Syria after the regime force and the Syria Democratic Forces.
Jaysh Khaled Ibn al-Waleed, which pledges allegiance to the “Islamic State” organization, controls an area of about 250 square kilometers, which is about 0.13 percent of the area of the Syrian territory and the Jaysh exist in Yarmouk Basin in the western countryside of Daraa, which is adjacent to the occupied Syrian Golan Heights.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitored since the second half of 2016 until today, the 23rd of October 2017, a significant change in terms of expansion of the regime forces and their allied militiamen of Syrian and non-Syrian nationalities, with the support of Russia and Iran, as well as the expansion of the Syria Democratic Forces in terms of their areas of control, and the entry of the Turkish forces into the Syrian territory and their participation with their supported factions in military operations, through which they blocked the last exist remained for the “Islamic State” organization with the outside world, in addition to the significant decline of the “Islamic state” organization in many areas, as the regime forces managed in many areas to restore control over areas after besieging them and agreeing with the people in these cities and towns on “settlement of their situations or displacement”.
Link of a High resolution map of Syria shows the distribution of military powers and influences in the Syrian territory