Thursday, 23 May, 2019

Idlib frontline: Syrian rebels are withdrawing heavy weaponry

Арабский политолог объяснил с какими трудностями столкнутся Россия и Турция при создании демилитаризованной зоны в Сирии Idlib demilitarized zone is free of heavy weapons: Turkish MoD
Deanna Wagner | 12 October, 2018, 21:08

By next Monday, the militant zone's most powerful armed group, the Hayat Tahrir al Sham (HTS) alliance led by Al Qaeda's former Syria branch, and other militant factions must also withdraw their fighters.

"Following the successful measures taken by Iran, Russia and Turkey in settling the Syrian issue, their [US and regional states] concerns only continued to grow, but Iran and Turkey, with their strong historical roots, will not be shaken in the face of such threats", said Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani in a meeting with Turkish Grand National Assembly Speaker, Binali Yildirim, on Tuesday.

All rebels in the demilitarised zone must withdraw heavy arms by Wednesday, and radical groups must leave by October 15, under the deal.

The Turkish-backed National Liberation Front fighters had agreed to withdraw heavy weaponry from the region within a month of a truce being reached with the regime, via Russian Federation and Turkey.

The young dust-covered rebel looked out warily from a dirt trench facing opposing regime forces as his unit pulled heavy weapons from a planned buffer zone in northern Syria.

According to AFP reporters on site, heavy weapons, including tanks and artillery guns, were removed from the area and transported elsewhere, in Idleb.

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Al-Mustafa added telling Enab Baladi that, in the past a few days, the Turkish forces have reinforced their presence in Idlib, entering weaponry and armored vehicles to the observation points, spreading within the agreed upon area.

According to the deal, the zone would separate rebel and regime zones under the supervision of the two sponsor countries.

In recent weeks, Turkey has sent military convoy in the province of Idleb and its soldiers are supposed to patrol in the future "demilitarized zone".

After a series of victories near Damascus and in the south of the country earlier this year, a similar Moscow-backed assault had been expected against Idlib before the Russia-Turkey deal was announced.

"Assad might want to reconquer Idlib, but for now he does not have a better option than this deal", he said.