Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on May 8 that Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) is still attacking the Russian Hmeimim airbase and stressed that “the terrorist nest” in Syria’s Idlib “must be uprooted.”
“The al-Nusra Front was covered under a new name, Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham, that don’t only control the situation there [Idlib], but also shell and attack the Syrian military positions and civilian areas. Recently, they also shelled the Russian Hmeimim airbase,” Lavrov said at a news conference with his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif, in Moscow, according to Sputnik.
The minister added: “For sure, they [the terrorists] received a response and will receive another in the future.”
These remarks came as the SAA continues to advance in the northern Hama countryside. The army also kicked off a ground operation in northern Lattakia. HTS and its allies maintain strong military presence in both regions.
Regarding the fate of the Russian-Turkish demilitarized zone agreement following these operations, Lavrov clarified that the agreement “doesn’t include a single word about the importance of protecting terrorists.”
Lavrov’s remarks indicate that Moscow is determined to neutralize the terrorist threat in Idlib by all available means.