On May 9, a convoy of the Turkish Army, consisting of 60 armored vehicles, bulldozers and trucks, entered the district of al-Rashidin, 1km west of the city of Aleppo, according to Syrian opposition sources.
The Turkish Anadolu Agency and the Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS)-lined news agency Iba’a confirmed that the mission of the Turkish Army convoy is to establish a new observation post in al-Rashidin in order to monitor the de-escalation zone around Aleppo city.
Since the beginning of 2018, the Turkish Army has established five observation posts in the towns of Andan and al-Eis in Aleppo governorate, in the towns of Tell Tuqan and Sarman in Idlib governorate, and in Murak town in the northern Hama countryside.
Russia, Iran and Turkey agreed on establishing these observation posts during the Astana talks, according to Anadolu Agency. Tukey’s Presidential Spokesman Ibrahim Kalin revealed that twelve observation posts will be established in northern Syria under the Astana agreement.
Syrian pro-government sources reported that the Russian military had established several positions east of the new Turkish observation post in the al-Rashidin district to secure the western part of Aleppo city.
Local observers believe that the new Turkish observation post and the Russian military’s positions will put an end to aggressive activities of HTS there. The radical group has carried out dozens of hit and run attacks from its positions in al-Rashidin on SAA positions in the western part of Aleppo city, since early 2017.