On January 9, positions of militants in northern Lattakia, a part of the northwestern Syrian region of Greater Idlib, were targeted by a series of Russian airstrikes.
The Russian airstrikes, which became first in 2021, hit several hills in outskirts of the town of Kabani. The town is an infamous stronghold of many al-Qaeda factions, including Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), the Islamic Turkistan Party and Ajnad al-Kavkaz.
The airstrikes on Kabani were conducted by Su-24M attack aircraft, which took off from Russia’s Hmeimim Air Base in the southern countryside of Lattakia.
— ZOKA (@200_zoka) January 9, 2021
A day earlier, the HTS-led al-Fateh al-Mubeen Operations Room targeted Syrian military positions in northern Lattakia. Opposition sources claimed that a number of Syrian soldiers and a Russian officer were injured. Today’s airstrikes were likely a response to that attack.
Greater Idlib militants have been becoming more and more aggressive. The ceasefire in the region, which was brokered by Russia and Turkey on March 5 of 2020, is being violated on a daily basis.
The March 5 agreement has so far failed to stabilize Greater Idlib. The region’s militants are still unwilling to accept peaceful efforts. A large-scale operation seems to be needed to open the Lattakia-Aleppo highway, M4, as well as to restore the stability there.
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