On June 10, the Turkish military and its proxy, the Syrian National Army (SNA), shelled government-held areas in the northwestern Syrian region of Greater Idlib in response to the assassination of three commanders of al-Qaeda-affiliated Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS).
The Turkish shelling targeted positions of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and its allies in southern Idlib and northwestern Hama. No casualties or material losses were reported.
“The artillery of the Turkish military and the SNA targeted military positions of regime forces with more than 80 shells in different areas in the countryside of Hama and Idlib,” Major Youssef Al-Hamoud, a spokesman for the SNA, said.
Militants of the al-Fateh al-Mubeen Operations Room, led by HTS, also targeted a battle tank and vehicle of the SAA with anti-tank guided missiles.
Earlier today, warplanes of the Russian Aerospace Forces carried out a series of airstrikes on militants’ positions in Greater Idlib. The SAA and Russian Special Forces also targeted a number of militants positions with precision-guided artillery rounds.
The Russian and Syrian strikes killed HTS’ military spokesman, Abu Khalid al-Shami, main media coordinator, Abu Musab al-Homsi, as well as Mu’ataz al-Nasir, commander of the group’s internal security forces.
The Turkish response to the targeted assassinations highlights Ankara’s strong support for HTS, the de-facto ruler of Greater Idlib.
Turkish forces are supposed to monitor the ceasefire and combat terrorist groups in Greater Idlib as a part of the March 5 2020 agreement with Russia. Nevertheless, Ankara and its proxies are doing the exact opposite. The ceasefire may collapse soon as a result of this.