Syria’s Defense Minister Maj. Gen. Ali Abdullah Ayoub said on October 25 that the governorate of Idlib, which is controlled by several radical militant groups, is a Syrian territory and it will return to the Syrian state in the end.
“The governorate of Idlib is like any other Syria region and will return to the Syrian state whether those who don’t wish well for Syria accept this or not,” Maj. Gen. Ayoub said during a speech in the Syrian Parliament, according to the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA).
Furthermore, Maj. Gen Ayoub stressed that the Syrian state will deal with the remaining areas, which the U.S. is still betting on, either by local reconciliations or by military operations.
“Washington has been losing its cards in Syria after most areas in Homs, Aleppo, Deir Ezzor, Eastern Ghouta, Darra and al-Quneitra, had been liberated from terrorism and returned to Syria’s sovereignty,” Maj. Gen Ayoub said.
The Syrian defense minister statement indicates that the Damascus government didn’t give up on Idlib after the Russian-Turkish deconfliction agreement. Previously, Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad called the agreement a “temporary measure.”
In the last few weeks, radical and Turkish-backed groups violated the deconfliction agreement multiple times. If these violations continue, the Damascus and its allies may indeed launch a military operation to liberate Idlib by force.