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Ankara Escalates North of Aleppo, Damascus Bombs Idlib Countryside

Ankara Escalates North of Aleppo, Damascus Bombs Idlib Countryside

Sunday, 17 October, 2021 - 11:00
A fighter from a Turkish-backed faction north of Aleppo (Asharq Al-Awsat)

Ankara continued its military escalation in the countryside of Aleppo, northern Syria, while the Syrian regime forces bombed areas in Idlib countryside near the Turkish border.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported that three people were killed, including a policeman, and 15 others wounded in shelling by the regime forces on the border city of Sarmada with Iskenderun.

SOHR said that new military reinforcements for the regime forces arrived on Saturday, consisting of dozens of buses carrying soldiers, tanks and rocket launchers, to the Maarat al-Numan area and the fighting axes in Jabal al-Zawiya, south of Idlib, and Saraqib, east of Idlib, on the Aleppo-Lattakia road.

An opposition military commander said that two soldiers were killed and three others wounded when an explosive device targeted their car as a Turkish army convoy was passing near the town of Maarat Misrin, north of Idlib.

On the other hand, the Turkish forces command in Syria asked the loyal factions to raise their readiness and be fully prepared for any escalation, in light of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s talk about an imminent battle against “terrorists” in northern Syria.

Turkey renewed artillery shelling on the areas of SDF deployment, targeting the villages of Al-Malikiyah and Qalaat Al-Shawargha, north of Aleppo.

Two unnamed Turkish officials told Reuters on Friday that Turkey was making preparations for a possible attack against Kurdish fighters in the Tal Rifaat area north of Aleppo if Ankara’s talks with Russia and US fail.

Meanwhile, sources in Damascus reported that the Israeli army killed the former prisoner, Medhat Saleh, while he was in the town of Ain al-Tineh in the liberated part of the Golan.

Other sources said that Saleh, who moved to Damascus after his release from an Israeli prison at the end of the 1990s, was close to elements who sought to establish “armed cells in the Golan.”

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