In a new violation of the Russian-Turkish deconfliction agreement, fighters of Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) destroyed a BMP-1 armored vehicle of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) in the southwestern Aleppo countryside with an anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) on November 8.
Few hours later, the SAA responded to the violation by shelling several positions of HTS and its allies in the area of al-Rashidin northwest of the city of Aleppo with Grad rockets.
The deconfliction agreement forbids HTS and other radical groups from deploying any fighters or heavy weapons in the southwestern Aleppo countryside, as it is considered a part of the demilitarized zone around the governorate of Idlib.
HTS is yet to comply with these terms. This poses a serious threat to the deconfliction agreement. Last week, a Syrian source warned that the SAA and its allies will launch a large-scale military operation in Idlib, if the agreement collapses.