Early on August 5, unidentified gunmen ambushed a car carrying service members of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) in the eastern countryside of Daraa, where former rebels have been taking a stand against Syrian authorities.
The gunmen targeted the car with machine guns as it was passing on a road between the town of Izraa and the governorate of al-Suwayda. The area is controlled by the Russian-backed 8th Brigade, a unit of the SAA’s 5th Corps that was especially formed in 2018 for former rebels in the eastern Daraa countryside. ISIS cells are known to be active in the area.
A source in the SAA told SouthFront that two service members were killed and three others were wounded during the ambush. In response to the incident, the army deployed large reinforcements, including five battle tanks and an infantry fighting vehicle, on Izraa-al-Suwayda road.
While it is possible that Daraa’s former rebels were behind the ambush, there is still no evidence suggesting that this was the case.
The ambush came as negotiations between Syrian authorities and local leaders in Daraa al-Balad, the southern part of Daraa city, are facing some serious setbacks.
The negotiations, which are meant to end the current crisis in Daraa al-Balad and secure the area, are being mediated by Russia. Moscow is still working to find a peaceful solution for the crisis in the southern Syrian governorate.
“Moscow is counting on a peaceful solution to the situation in Daraa,” Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Vershinin said on August 5.
Daraa al-Balad leaders are still refusing the demands set by Syrian authorities, which include the deployment of SAA units in the area and the deportation of all wanted gunmen. This stand could force the authorities to implement a military solution.
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