On November 6, warplanes of the Russian Aerospace Forces carried out eight airstrikes on the northwestern Syrian region of Greater Idlib where several terrorist groups are present and active.
The Russian airstrikes hit the surroundings of the town of Jisr al-Shughur which is located in the western countryside of Idlib.
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According to Syrian pro-government sources, the airstrikes targeted a headquarters and a number of positions of the Turkistan Islamic Party (TIP).
Jisr al-Shughur was captured by a coalition of al-Qaeda-affiliated groups and Turkish-backed factions in June of 2015. Back then, the al-Nusra Front [now known as Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS)] killed or expelled most of the locals as a punishment for their support to the government.
Within a few months, TIP terrorists and their families settled in the city and its surroundings, turning the area into in a hub for foreign terrorists.
The Russian airstrikes were likely a response to recent violations of the ceasefire in Greater Idlib by HTS and its allies, including the TIP.
The ceasefire, which was brokered by Russia and Turkey last year, is barely holding up. According to recent reports, the Syrian Arab Army and its allies may soon launch a ground operation in Greater Idlib to reinforce the ceasefire. Turkey, whose forces are deployed in the region, will likely stand against such an operation.