Syrian troops close to western outskirts of opposition-held town

Syrian regime forces have gained more ground in the country’s northwest. (File photo: AFP)

Syrian state media and an opposition war monitor say government forces have gained more ground in the country’s northwest, almost reaching the western outskirts of a major opposition-held town.

The state SANA news agency says government troops made advances on Sunday around the opposition-held town of Khan Sheikhoun after intense fighting with militants.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which tracks the war, said the troops are now about 1 kilometer, or half a mile, from Khan Sheikhoun in Idlib province, the last major opposition-held area in Syria.

The government offensive in the northwest began on April 30 and has displaced more than 450,000 people.

Syrian troops, backed by Russia, in recent days intensified their push, seizing a number of villages on the town’s southern edge.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 14:05 - GMT 11:05