On August 9, helicopters of the Syrian Arab Air Force (SyAAF) dropped thousands of leaflets over the eastern Idlib countryside, in which the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) called on the civilians there to cooperate with it and to join the reconciliation process, according to the Syrian news outlet Enab Baladi.
“Your cooperation with the Syrian Arab Army saves you from the control of militants and protects your lives and the lives of your families,” one of the leaflets reads.
Such leaflets are usually dropped by SyAAF as a warning ahead of military operations. However, the leaflets which were dropped over the governorate of Idlib may be a part of the ongoing information campaign against Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS).
During the last two weeks, HTS and other armed groups in northern Syria launched several security operations against the supporters of the reconciliation process. As a result of these operations, dozens of civilians were arrested and they are now facing the threat of execution.
The SAA leaflets will likely cause mass panic among the militants in Idlib as they already fear a large-scale offensive, similar to what we recently saw in southern Syria.