‘Peaceful Idlib rebels’ tried to attack a joint Russian-Turkish patrol along the M4 highway in southern Idlib on May 12.
This was the 10th joint Russian-Turkish patrol in the area and the 3rd one, which was set to be held via the extended route from the west of Saraqib to the eastern entrance of Ariha.
However, the patrol was aborted after an explosion (supposedly caused by an IED) erupted near the patrol in the area east of Ariha. The incident happened after Turkish troops briefly clashes with Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda) supporters throwing stones at vehicles.
On May 10 and May 11, fierce clashes erupted between the Syrian Army and al-Qaeda-linked militants in the town of Tanjarah in northwestern Hama. Militants briefly captured the town but then they were forced to retreat under strikes on the Syrian Army. 37 soldiers and 24 militants were reportedly killed in the clashes.