Backed by Russian jets, Syrian troops and their allies attacked rebel-held towns north of the city of Homs, reports Reuters citing local TV channels and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a UK-based group, which has been monitoring the war in Syria.

Russian fighter jets are reported to have hit several targets near the towns of Talbiseh and Teir Malla located 5 kilometers from Homs, a town mostly controlled by government forces.

It is also reported that Syrian troops are fighting side by side with militants of Hezbollah, a Lebanon-based Shia terrorist group. Reports that the Syrian Army has launched an offensive outside the town of Homs have also been aired by Al-Manar, a Hezbolla-affiliated TV channel.