Turkey neutralizes 63 Assad militiamen in Syria’s Idlib
Turkish troops in Idlib Omar Haj Kadour
Date: 2020-02-14 11:32
A total of 63 Assad regime militiamen have been neutralized in Idlib de-escalation zone, northwestern Syria, Turkey's National Defense Ministry said on Friday (February 13).
"According to the latest information received from various sources in Idlib region, 63 Assad regime elements have been neutralized", the ministry said on Twitter.
Turkish authorities often use the term "neutralized" to imply the terrorists in question surrendered or were killed or captured.
The latest development comes in the wake of an attack by Assad regime earlier this week that claimed the lives of five Turkish troops. It followed an attack last week by the regime in Idlib that killed seven Turkish soldiers and one civilian contractor working with the Turkish military. More than a dozen people were also injured.
Turkey retaliated for both attacks, hitting scores of targets and killing 200 Assad regime militiamen.
If Turkish soldiers in Syria are again targeted, Turkey will strike at Assad regime militias regardless of the 2018 Sochi deal with Russia, Turkey’s president said on Wednesday.
Turkish troops are in Idlib -- nominally a cease-fire zone, under a deal between Turkey and Russia -- as part of an anti-terror and peace mission.
Idlib has been a stronghold of the Syrian opposition since the outbreak of the Syrian revolution in 2011.
In September 2018, Turkey and Russia agreed to turn Idlib into a de-escalation zone in which acts of aggression are expressly prohibited.
But more than 1,800 civilians have been killed in attacks by Assad regime and Russia since then, flouting both the 2018 cease-fire and a new one that started on Jan. 12.
Based on AA