Early on Thursday, the Syrian Army announced that it would open a humanitarian corridor for the safe withdrawal of civilians trapped in militant-held areas of northern Hama province towards government-controlled territory.
The corridor for civilians wishing to leave the combat zone in Hama has since been opened, specifically so in the form of a large checkpoint at the frontier town of Souran, situated on the M5 Highway.
On Wednesday, a two-pronged Syrian Army operation to capture Khan Sheykhun concluded with the jaws of the pincer slamming shut at the western and eastern gates of the city.
By this advance, the Syrian Army effectively besieged three major militant strongholds further south of Khan Sheykhun, namely, the cities of Kafr Zita, Al-Latamenah and Murak.
Hundreds of militants are thought to be trapped in the pocket created by the Syrian Army and among them there are civilians who have generally been held hostage and not allowed the freedom to retreat towards government-held areas.
With insurgent groups trapped in Hama having to consider their own withdrawal from the region under supervision from the Syrian Army, the conditions are now more ideal for civilians hoping to escape to government-held areas.