May 8, 2015 ARA News – Aleppo, Syria – The Islamic State group (IS/ISIS) announced Thursday morning an amnesty for the pro-regime soldiers trapped in the Kwairis military airport in the eastern countryside of Aleppo, in case they surrender.
At least 1800 Syrian soldiers are trapped inside the Kwairis airport. The group called on the pro-regime soldiers trapped in the military airport to “take a lesson” from the soldiers who were arrested during the battles of the military airport of Tabqa in Raqqa province last year –most of whom have been summarily executed. The group delivered three phone numbers to the trapped soldiers so that they can communicate with the IS militants in case they agreed to surrender. Speaking to ARA News, field sources close to Kwairis military airport said that the regime forces moved hundreds of its members from the airport and transferred them to Neirab military airport in the city of Aleppo following Islamists’ fierce attacks on Kwairis. Samih Abu Dawoud, an activist from Aleppo, told ARA News that heavy fighting began on Wednesday evening near Kwairis and resulted in the IS control over the entrance of the airport following three car bomb attacks conducted by the group. Meanwhile, pro-IS sources reported that the militants were able to kill General Commander Sharaf Shafiq along with other officers from the regime army in Kwairis.
Kwairis airport is deemed one of the most strategic military airports in northern Syria, given that fact that it’s located on the main highway between Aleppo and Raqqa. Inside the airport, there are still 1800 to 2000 pro-regime soldiers and 60 warplanes as well as other heavy weapons, guns and ammunition depots. Alternative names for the Kwairis airport are: “Dayr Ha Fir”, “Kweyres”, “Al Kwairis”, “Rasin El Aboud”. It houses the 3rd FTS (L-39ZA Albatros, MBB-233 Flamingo).
The warplanes are usually used for training, but during the Syrian civil war the Aero L-39 were frequently used for air-to-ground attacks against rebels. Additionally, Kwairis airport includes the Air Force Academy that deals with the graduation of the Syrian air force officers. On Wednesday, the IS group gained control over the administrative office at the entrance of the Kwairis military airport after carrying out three car bomb attacks against pro-regime forces there. Reporting by: Sarbaz Yousef and Jiwan Saman – Source: ARA News