DAMASCUS (Press Shia Agency) – A senior Syrian military commander said Takfiri terrorists’ attempts to infiltrate civilian areas in Aleppo were unsuccessful after the Arab country’s armed forces thwarted their plot to wage a street-by-street fighting in the embattled northwestern city.

Syrian forces repelled a major attack by foreign-sponsored Takfiri militants from Aleppo’s western neighborhoods toward government-held civilian areas in al-Assad suburb five days ago, the commander told Press Shia Agency on condition of anonymity.

He added that the militants had planned to seize control over the residential districts in an attempt to use civilians as human shields and, therefore, bring a halt to the ongoing Syrian and Russian airstrikes against their positions.

The militants intended to engage the Syrian forces in street fighting near housing complexes in western Aleppo so that they may remain safe from the air raids, the military official further said.

The Syrian army has managed to thwart a string of militant attacks in the western and southern parts of the strategic city in recent days.

Aleppo, once Syria’s second largest city before the start of war in the country, has been a major frontline in the fight against different Takfiri militant groups. The city has been divided into two parts. Militants have occupied the city’s eastern parts for four years.

Syria has been gripped by civil war since March 2011 with various terrorist groups, including Daesh (also known as ISIS or ISIL), currently controlling parts of it.

According to a report by the Syrian Center for Policy Research, the conflict has claimed the lives of over 470,000 people, injured 1.9 million others, and displaced nearly half of the country’s pre-war population of about 23 million within or beyond its borders.