Turkish army tanks in Idlib, monitoring zones established

Turkish army tanks in Idlib, monitoring zones established

"Tonight, Turkish Armed Forces jointly with the FSA units started an operation in Idlib", the president said.

The Turkish army is backing the pro-Ankara Free Syrian Army that will need to oust HTS members in the area to allow Iranian, Russian and Turkish forces implement the de-escalation zone.

As part of the latest victories by the Syrian Army against Daesh (ISIL) terrorist group, the government troops on Thursday advanced in al-Mayadeen city in Deir ez-Zor, east of Syria.

Three zones are already in place - in Eastern Ghouta near Damascus, in central Homs, and in parts of southern Syria - which are being monitored by Russian military police.

Idlib province is one of the four de-escalation zones unveiled in May by the participants in the Astana negotiations, which includes Russia, Iran and Turkey.

Several Turkish military vehicles, ambulances and tankers were visible in photographs published by Turkey's Anadolu news agency late on Thursday stationed at a village near Turkey's Reyhanli border gate opposite Bab al-Hawa. Russia, Syria and Turkey have been discussing a deal for the Turkish involvement.


Turkey has supported rebels fighting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad throughout the war.

The Syrian conflict began after widespread protests against the government in 2011 but has since turned into a multi-front war that has killed more than 330,000 people.

However, the deployment is also meant to rein in the Kurdish YPG militia, which holds the adjacent Afrin region, a senior rebel official involved in the operation said.

Last year, Turkey launched the Euphrates Shield operation, an incursion into northern Syria alongside Syrian rebel groups to take territory on the frontier from Islamic State.

The development came after Turkey said it was sending in troops to enforce a de-escalation zone in Idlib.

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