On June 4, the Russian Military Police and the Turkish military conducted a 15th joint patrol on the M4 highway in the northwestern Syrian region of Greater Idlib.
The patrol started from the government-held town of Tronba bypassed the town of Arihah and reached the village of Kafer Shalaya for the first time ever.
— T.C. Millî Savunma Bakanlığı (@tcsavunma) June 4, 2020
While the Russian-Turkish patrol was passing near Arihah, two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) exploded. Some opposition activists claimed that Turkish forces detonated the IEDs, while others said they struck the joint patrol. No losses were reported, however.
Last week, a mysterious explosion struck a Turkish patrol on the M4. A Turkish service member was killed and others were reportedly injured.
The M4 links the coastal city of Lattakia with Aleppo city, Syria’s industrial hub. Russia and Turkey agreed to open the highway on March 5.
Turkey is making serious efforts to reopen the highway. Nevertheless, terrorist groups are still present in its vicinity. If Ankara fails to address this threat, the Syrian Arab Army and its allies could use force to secure the highway.