On June 12, warplanes of the Russian Aerospace Forces carried out a series of airstrikes on militants’ positions in the northwestern Syrian region of Greater Idlib.
The airstrikes targeted the outskirts of the towns of Ruweiha, Moataf and Sarjah in the southern Idlib countryside. Casualties were reported.
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The airstrikes were most likely a response to recent provocations by al-Qaeda-affiliated Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), the de-factor ruler of Greater Idlib, and its allies. In the last few days, the militants carried out intense artillery and rocket strikes on government-held areas.
According to HTS’ Ibaa news agency, one of the recent strikes targeted an operations room of the Syrian Arab Army and its allies in the town of Ma’saran in the southern countryside of Idlib.
HTS and its allies stepped up their attacks earlier this week following a series of Russian and Syrian strikes. Nine militants, including a spokesman for the terrorist group, were killed in the strikes.
Turkey, which committed to fight terrorist groups in Greater Idlib under the March 5, 2020 deal with Russia, has been supporting HTS and its allies. The situation in the region will likely escalate further in the upcoming few days. The ceasefire is on the brink of collapse.