On August 5, a source in the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) told SouthFront that the SAA and the Tiger Forces redeployed several units and heavy weapons from southern Syria to the northern Lattakia countryside.
While the source declined to provide further information, a report of the al-Masdar News outlet claimed that the SAA and its allies are preparing to launch a larg-scale military operation to secure the northern Lattakia countryside and capture the strategic city of Jisr al-Shughur in the northwestern Idlib countryside.
According to the pro-government news outlet, the Tiger Forces and units of the SAA’s 4th Division will participate in the military operation, which is set to begin in the upcoming weeks.
The northern Lattakia countryside and Jisr al-Shughur are considered strongholds of several al-Qaeda-affiliated groups, such as the Turkistan Islamic Party (TIP) and Horas al-Din. Furthermore, the Ministry of Defense of Russia believe that the attacks on its Hmeimim airbase were launched from these areas.
Earlier this year, Turkey established two observation posts in the northern Lattakia countryside and near Jisr al-Shughur. While some local observers believe that these posts will stop any operation of the SAA, others believe that Russia may pressure Turkey to withdraw them.