Syrian regime forces killed 22 rebels near Idleb province on Friday, in an area to be “demilitarized” under a Russian-Turkish agreement, the Syrian Observatory of Rights said of Man (OSDH).
Ultimate Great Insurgent Bastion and Jihadist
This is the deadliest assault in this region of north-west of the country at war since the announcement on 17 September of an agreement between Russia and Turkey providing for a “demilitarized zone” covering areas of the Province of Idleb and other neighboring areas, according to the NGO.
Fighting erupted as government forces seized a position controlled by the rebel Jaïch al-Izza faction in a rural area in northern Hama province, the source said.
The province of Idleb is the ultimate great insurgent and jihadist stronghold of the country, and as such in the sights of the regime of Bashar al-Assad, determined to reclaim the entire territory.
The agreement reached between Moscow, ally of the regime of Bashar al-Assad, and Ankara, support of the rebels, has allowed to repel an offensive of the Syrian army on Idleb.
The “demilitarized zone” must serve as a buffer zone between the insurgent territories of Idleb and those held by the regime around it.
The agreement was supposed to come into force in mid-October, but on the ground some provisions were not respected and skirmishes regularly pitted the regime’s forces against rebels and jihadists.
Since its inception in 2011, the conflict has claimed more than 360,000 lives in Syria and pushed millions of civilians into exile.