On July 31, a number of pinpoint strikes targeted the Watad Petroleum Company in the town of Saramada in the northwestern Syrian region of Greater Idlib.
The strikes targeted the company’s headquarters as well as its main fuel storage facility. A series of large fires erupted as a result. The strikes caused serious material losses. However, no casualties have been reported, thus far.
Opposition activists said three precision-guided projectiles had targeted the company’s facilities in the early morning hours.
— همام (@humam_isa) July 31, 2020
Watad is owned by al-Qaeda-affiliated Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS). The company has a monopoly over the fuel market in Greater Idlib and is known to be behind the oil trafficking from Syria to Turkey.
The company was apparently targeted with suicide drones or precision-guided non-line-of-sight missiles. HTS has not yet shared any information on the weapon used in the strikes.
On July 18, three mysterious projectiles, believed to be suicide drones, targeted the headquarters of Watad. No serious damage was reported back then. A similar attack on the company was also reported on July 7.
These pinpoint strikes on Watad may have been launched by the Syrian, Russian or Iranian forces. The strikes are likely meant to disturb the financial network of HTS. Watad is one of the main income sources of the terrorist group, which dominates in Greater Idlib.