On February 19, the Turkish military deployed troops inside the town of al-Atarib in Aleppo’s western countryside, according to local sources.
The al-Atarib’s Media Center released photos showing Turkish service members inside the town. The service members appeared to be from the Turkish Armed Forces’ commandos units.
Last week, the Turkish military established at least two “observation posts” north and west of al-Atarib. The step was not likely coordinated with Russia.
The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) is now stationed less than 4 km to the east of al-Atarib. The town may be one of the next main targets of the army’s ongoing large-scale military operation.
The deployment of Turkish troops inside al-Atarib is a serious escalation by Turkey, whose president vowed to launch an attack on the SAA in Greater Idlib earlier today. These moves by Ankara may lead to a military confrontation in the Syrian region soon.