Militants Shell Towns in Syria’s Idlib, Russian Military Says

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MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Militants from the Hayat Tahrir al-Sham* terrorist group have conducted three attacks in the Syrian province of Idlib, Rear Admiral Oleg Zhuravlev, the head of the Russian Defense Ministry’s centre for Syrian reconciliation, said on Saturday.

“We have registered two attacks on the settlement of Maaret-Mouhos and one attack on the settlement of Dadih in the Idlib province from the positions of Jabhat al-Nusra terrorist organization”, Zhuravlev said.

He noted that there had not been any confirmed attacks by the armed groups controlled by Turkey.

Russian military police meanwhile carried out patrol missions in Aleppo and Hasakah.

On 5 March, Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, agreed on a ceasefire in Idlib, which started at midnight. The sides also agreed to create a security corridor six kilometres (3.7 miles) north and south of the M4 highway in Syria, which connects the provinces of Latakia and Aleppo.

Under the ceasefire agreement, Moscow and Ankara conduct joint patrols along the M4 highway, which is currently controlled by militants.

Militants remain in control of a small pocket of the Idlib province in northwest Syria.

*Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly known as Jabhat al-Nusra) is a terrorist organization banned in Russia and many other countries.

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