On September 16, warplanes of the Russian Aerospace Forces (VKS) carried out airstrikes on the al-Zawiya Mount in the southern part of Syria’s Greater Idlib.
According to the London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the Russian airstrikes targeted the outskirt of the towns of Ruwayḩah, Benin and Sarjah. A series of militants’ positions are located around the towns, which lay along the frontline with the Syrian Arab Army (SAA).
Earlier in the morning, the SAA’s artillery shelled militants’ positions in different parts of the al-Zawiya Mount. No losses were reported.
The strikes came amid a new round of Russian-Turkish talks on Greater Idlib. According to RIA Novosti, Ankara refused to reduce the number of observation posts in the region, but agreed to lower the number of its troops there.
In March, Russia and Turkey reached a breakthrough agreement to stabilize Greater Idlib. While Ankara is fulfilling few of the agreement’s terms, it continues to ignore others.
Turkey’s attempts to manipulate the agreement appear to be frustrating Damascus and its allies, who are now stepping up their operations in Greater Idlib. The region’s pro-government locals are also taking steps to pressure Ankara like the recent protests around Turkish observation posts.
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