On August 28, warplanes of the Russian Aerospace Forces carried out at least eight airstrikes on militants’ positions in the northwestern Syrian region of Greater Idlib.
The Russian airstrikes targeted the outskirts of the towns of al-Bara, Almaouzrah and Ain La Rose. All three towns are a part of the al-Zawiya Mount in the southern countryside of Idlib. The mountainous area is infested with positions of al-Qaeda-affiliated Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), the de-facto ruler of Greater Idlib, and Turkish-backed militants.
During the airstrikes, Russian, Syrian and Iranian drones and reconnaissance planes were spotted flying over Greater Idlib.
غارات روسية على المناطق الزراعية بين بلدي البارة وكنصفرة جنوبي إدلب.
طارق أحمد- إدلب- نورث برس pic.twitter.com/MJpQrJIlmG
— North Press Agency – عربية (@NPA_Arabic) August 28, 2021
— مزمجر الثورة السورية (@mzmgr941) August 28, 2021
غارات جوية روسية تستهدف محيط بلدة البارة في ريف ادلب الجنوبي . pic.twitter.com/3uziwrZV4U
— ميلاد فضل (@freeehsem) August 28, 2021
— Adam Abdullah (@tommycats4) August 28, 2021
Russian warplanes have been attacking militants’ positions in Greater Idlib for nine days now. A day earlier, two ground-to-air missiles were launched at the warplanes, reportedly by Turkish forces.
While more Russian airstrikes will likely hit Greater Idlib in the upcoming few days, the chances of the Syrian Arab Army launching a ground operation in the region remain slim.
Any ground operation in Greater Idlib will certainly lead to a military confrontation with Turkish forces, which maintain a large presence in the region. The recent Russian airstrikes on the region were likely carried out to reinforce the 2020 ceasefire agreement and punish HTS and its allies for their repeated attacks.
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