Syrian army soldiers patrol a street in Aleppo's government-controlled al-Khalidiyah area on June 28, 2016. ©AFP
The Syrian army and its allied fighters have managed to wrest control of Castello Road, the only path into the militant-controlled eastern areas of the embattled city of Aleppo.
Lebanon's al-Manar TV channel reported the advance by the Syrian troops on Tuesday, adding that they also took control of a number of positions in Aleppo’s Layramoun district, located on the northwestern outskirts of Aleppo.
Meanwhile, the so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said that Syrian forces established full control over Layramoun after heavy clashes, and reported fighting for neighboring Bani Zeid district, which is also held by Takfiri terrorists.
The two neighborhoods have been used by militants to launch rockets into government-held areas in western parts of Aleppo.
SOHR director Rami Abdel Rahman said that the Syrian forces had now surrounded Bani Zeid.
Syrians walk past an empty grocery market in the militant-held area of Aleppo on July 10, 2016. ©AFP
In another development on Tuesday, Syria’s official news agency, SANA, reported that the army had sent text messages to residents and militants in eastern Aleppo, saying it will grant safe passage to people wishing to leave the area.
The Syrian military further urged the extremists to lay down their weapons and called on eastern Aleppo residents to "join the national reconciliation and expel the foreign mercenaries" from their neighborhoods.
Also on Tuesday, the Syrian armed forces liberated more than a dozen people, who were held by al-Nusra front terrorist group in the town of Saida in the southwestern province of Dara’a.
An unidentified source told SANA that the 14 were set free in an operation, adding that all of those rescued are in good health.
Syria has been gripped by foreign-sponsored militancy since March 2011. UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura estimates that over 400,000 people have been killed in the Syrian conflict. The UN has stopped its official casualty count in the Middle Eastern state, citing its inability to verify the figures it receives from various sources.
The Takfiri terrorists operating in the Arab country have suffered major setbacks over the past few months as the Syrian army has managed to liberate a number of areas from the grip of the extremists.

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