On March 18, heavy clashes erupted in the western Daraa countryside between the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and the remaining radical militants in the region.
The tension began when the army established several checkpoints next to the town of Jillen. Three rebel commanders who were passing near the town refused to stop, which forced Syrian troops to open fire, killing two of them.
The slain commanders were identified as Walid al-Barazi “Abu Raafat,” from the town of al-Ajmi, and Hassan “Abu Al-Ezz,” from the town of Atman. The third commander Bassem Jalmawi “Abu Kinan”, originally from the town of Qusayr, was injured.
In response to this incident, radical militants launched an attack on the SAA’s newly-established checkpoints in the vicinity of Jillen.
A military source told SouthFront that three soldiers were killed and others were injured in the militants’ attack. The army quickly responded, launching a barrage of rockets at militants’ positions in Jillen.
Eventually, the army withdraw its checkpoints from Jillen’s outskirt, likely to de-escalate the situation. The militants’ also halted their attack.
Jillen’s militants will likely face a large-scale security operation by the army, if they refuse to obey the terms of the reconciliation agreement they accepted in 2018. A similar operation took place in the nearby town of al-Sanamayn earlier this month.
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