The ISF and allied forces have reached and cleared the areas of Tikrit where ISIS was believed to be the most thoroughly entrenched.
JN and Rebel Forces Seize Provincial Capital in Idlib, Militia Headquarters in Dera’a: JN and rebel forces made two crucial gains against regime forces that threaten the continued viability of the regime’s Syria-wide war effort in 2015.
Rebel forces participating in the “Jaysh al-Fatah Operations Room” led by al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra (JN) seized the city of Idlib on March 28, 2015, following a four day offensive.
The contest for Tikrit is escalating. The ground offensive to retake the city has resumed following U.S. airstrikes, although without the Iranian-backed militias that withdrew in opposition to coalition involvement.
Iranian-backed militias have exhibited mixed reactions to the participation of the U.S.-led coalition in the Tikrit operation.
Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi has announced that the "last phase" of the Salah ad-Din operations has begun, likely in reference to the operation to retake Tikrit.
Merger of Prominent Islamist Groups Provides JN Opportunity to Establish Partnership: The absorption of Suqour al-Sham into HASI counters rising JN influence in northern Syria by consolidating the combat power of major Islamist elements of the opposition. The merger does not, however, necessarily challenge JN’s military supremacy nor jeopardize its ongoing efforts to govern.
The deployments of ISF units from the south to various fronts in western and northern Iraq between December 2013 and the present has caused a security vacuum in the southern provinces.