On August 17th, a Turkish armored vehicle was hit by an explosive while the Turkish Armed Forces and the Russian Armed Forces were carrying out their patrol along the M4 highway in Idlib.
— Qalaat Al Mudiq (@QalaatAlMudiq) August 17, 2020
According to reports it was an IED, but it could have potentially been an RPG shot, since it is unclear from the footage.
Turkish Kirpi vehicles was hit(looks like an IED). pic.twitter.com/XgkX8pEN42
— MapperKrum (@Krummapper) August 17, 2020
The incident took place near Ariha, where almost exactly a month earlier a previous patrol was hit by a car bomb.
#Syria: after an IED was dismantled yesterday by #TSK, today a massive blast targeted the joint #TSK–#Russia|n patrol on M4 Highway. Reports of casualties among Russian forces. pic.twitter.com/e947uPqMgb
— Qalaat Al Mudiq (@QalaatAlMudiq) July 14, 2020
Activities to discover and disable IEDs are on-going in Greater Idlib and around Aleppo, there were reports that a significant number were dismantled in the days leading up to August 17th.
— Qalaat Al Mudiq (@QalaatAlMudiq) August 16, 2020
These attacks are an expected outcome of Turkey’s apparent refusal to undertake effective actions to combat terrorism in the area of Idlib.
As long as Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham and others remain in the area, and are the de facto authority in the area, these attacks will continue taking place.
No political solution is possible until the area has been cleansed.
Furthermore, Ankara really has no choice but to, at least partially, support terrorists, since the myth of a “moderate opposition” has all but died.
At the same time, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan needs a buffer that would allow Turkey to annex further territories of Syria, such as Hatay Province which used to be under Damascus control in the past.
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