The Mediterranean Theater of operations was located in North Africa and in the Mediterranean Sea, including Italy. The first major operation in this theater was called operation Torch. This was the invasion of North Africa, by Allied troops, to try and either turn or destroy the Axis forces in North Africa. In the beginning, the Allied troops were not very successful, but the Allied victory at El Alamein changed this. The Allies stopped the Axis advance and broke through their lines. Though the Allies continued to have some hardships after this, the battle of El Alamein is considered to be the turning point in the North African Campaign. After accepting the surrender of Axis troops in North Africa on May 12, 1943, the Allies focused their efforts on Italy. The allies first went into Sicily, and then moved into the Italian mainland. Operation Avalanche and Operation Slapstick were the two allied invasions of Italy. The Allies encountered medium levels of resistance, since at the time Hitler had been convinced that Sothern Italy was strategically unimportant. The terrain made advance very difficult for the allies. The invasion into Rome was the most difficult for the Allies because it was heavily defended by determined German troops. Eventually the allies broke through. From Rome the allies began their advance into Northern Italy. The allies slowly pushed up through Italy and stayed there as an occupying force until the end of the war.