The Hezbollah operations room announced on Thursday that the operation to liberate Jorud Arsal in Lebanon and Jorud Flitah in Syria have been finished.
The operations room announced in its official statement that the presence of Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) on the Syrian-Lebanese border has ended, thus the operation has achieved all its goals.
On Thursday, nearly 100 buses carrying 7777 HTS fighters with their families along with wounded HTS fighter left to the Syrian province of Idlib.
The exchange was carried out at the Sa’an checkpoint in northern Hama, where HTS released 5 Hezbollah fighters who were captured in previous battles: Mousa Korani, Ahmed Mezher, Mohammed Jawad Yassin, Mohammed Mahdi Shuaib, Hassan Taha.
Moreover, HTS fighters had killed Raad al-Amuri – a field commander in HTS – before they leave. HTS fighters accused Al-Amuri of being an ISIS spy.
Lebanese Security Forces also discovered an explosive belt with an HTS fighter before boarding a bus. The explosive belt was dismantled and the fighter was allowed to leave.
The Hezbollah media win in Syria reported that the fighters of Saraya Ahl al-Sham – a group of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) – and their families are still at some points in Jorud Arsal, including Al-Malahi. They will leave in the coming days according to a new agreement.
Saraya Ahl al-Sham fighters had refused to leave with HTS fighters to Idlib. They are feared that HTS would kill them in Idlib because they had withdrawn from the battle of Jorud Arsal and handed over their positions to Hezbollah. Thus, they’re expected to leave to the Euphrates Shield-held areas in the northern countryside of Aleppo.
Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah is expected to announce in a public speech the battle to liberate Ras Baalbek in Lebanon and several areas of the western Qalamoun in Syria from ISIS. Dozens of ISIS fighters are still holed up in the area at the Syrian-Lebanese border.