DAMASCUS, Feb. 3 (Xinhua) -- The Syrian army is poised to launch a wide-scale operation in the eastern suburbs of the capital Damascus, local media said Sunday.
The pro-government al-Watan newspaper said that the operation starts from Hran al-Awamid town near the international airport of Damascus, adding that the town witnessed over the past two days a large deployment of the Syrian army following the "infiltration of hundreds of gunmen into the town to block the international airport's runway and later surround the entire airport amid threats to target civilian planes as an attempt to paralyze air traffic to Damascus."
It stressed that a large number of army troops have arrived at the surrounding of the village and started combing it with infantry and tanks amid information about the killing and wounding of a number of terrorists.
Earlier in the day, an amateur video footage showed a number of gunmen taking aim at a civilian airplane that appeared from distance.
The army's operation comes when a thick presence of security personnel in Damascus amid reports that the rebels might be planning for striking a "vital" area of the capital, according to the Russia Today TV.
The TV said the operation aims to secure the vicinity of the airport from possible rebels' attacks against commercial flights. It said that the troops have dislodged the rebels from the town of Aqraba located also near the airport, adding that the rebels have fled to Haran al-Awamid where the army currently is bracing for a wide-scale crackdown on their hideouts.
Earlier in the day, Syria's state-run SANA news agency denied as "absolutely untrue" media reports about an explosion near its headquarters in central Damascus, adding that the reports are part of the "misleading" media campaign against Syria and its national media.
It, however, said that bomb squads have detonated at dawn Sunday an explosive device planted by terrorists near the Obstetrics Hospital in the Halbouni area in the heart of Damascus, which is more than 70 meters away from the SANA's building.
It said that the blast caused no casualties.
Meanwhile, a military source said that army unites carried out a successful operation in the surrounding of Wadi al-Dhayff in the outskirts of the northern city of Idlib and eliminated scores of terrorists and destroyed their vehicles.
The incidents came as the head of Iran's supreme national security council, Saed Jalili, huddled in Syria on Saturday for a three-day visit which aims to discuss the recent Israeli airstrike targeted a Syrian military research center near Damascus on Wednesday.
Recent statements by an Iranian official indicate that Israeli will be overwhelmed by a possible Syrian payback.