Al-Qaeda-affiliated Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham is still blocking the Abu Duhur humanitarian corridor in southeastern Idlib in order to prevent the evacuation of civilians from Greater Idlib.
The Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) reported on September 20 that the group had established several “observation points” next to the corridor and in nearby towns in order to prevent any civilian from leaving the region.
“For the eight day in a row, terrorists of the al-Nusra Front [HTS original name] continue to prevent civilians from moving to the safe areas through the Abu Duhur corridor in order to use them as human shields,” the agency’s reporter said.
A day earlier, militants, believed to be members of HTS, shelled the vicinity of Abu Duhur humanitarian corridor in order to intimidate civilians planning to leave.
The Ab Duhur corridor was opened by the Damascus government earlier this month in order to facilitate the evacuation of civilians willing to leave Greater Idlib. However, HTS is preventing the evacuation.
By keeping civilians in Greater Idlib, HTS is clearly planning to continue to use them as human shields. Damascus will not likely tolerate this behavior for long.