BEIRUT - Syrian government forces backed by heavy Russian air strikes have recaptured a town seized by Islamic State near the road used by the army to access Aleppo, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported on Thursday.

The town of Khanaser is located some 50 km (30 miles) to the southeast of Aleppo city. IS captured it two days ago, the Observatory said. In a separate report, Syrian state media said the army had "restored security and stability" to Khanaser.

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It was not immediately clear if the road to Aleppo, which has been cut as a result of the attack, was reopened. The government has been forced to use the Khanaser road to reach Aleppo because insurgents control the main highway to the city further west.

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