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The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and its allies responded to recent militant attacks near Abu Dail with a limited offensive in the area.
In the first phase of the offensive, SAA units liberated Khuwayn al-Kabir, Ard al-Zurzur, the Aghir hilltop, and farms near al-Tamanah. After this, government troops attacked militants’ positions inside al-Tamanah itself.
Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, the al-Qaeda-affiliated Wa Harid al-Muminin operations room and the Turkish-backed National Front for Liberation are the main SAA opponents there. They carried out a counter-attack, involving a suicide bomber, but were not able to take the lost areas back.
It is expected that the Syrian Army could develop its advance even further. Despite declarations about the Assad regime’s aggression and the need to respect the Idlib ceasefire by mainstream media, militants continue to attack SAA positions in southern Idlib on a regular basis.
The Turkish military is preparing to establish new observation posts in Idlib. According to reports, new observation posts will be located near Saraqib, the Brick Factory, al-Shabibah camp on the Aleppo-Lattakia highway, in the area of Muhambal and near the city of Jisr al-Shughur.
By this move, Ankara is likely seeking to limit the expected SAA progress in the event of a large-scale advance on Idlib.
The Syrian Armed Forces have renamed the Tiger Forces, led by Brigadier General Suheil the Tiger al-Hassan, to the 25th Special Forces Division. Over the past few years, the Tiger Forces have participated in the most intense battles across Syria and become one of the most widely-known pro-government formation around the world. They will likely continue this tradition under the new name.