x

Society

Syrian, Turkish Armies Engage in New Deadly Clashes in Idlib

March 5, 2020

ANKARA — Turkey said that two more of its soldiers were killed Wednesday in a Syrian government attack in northwestern Syria, as steady clashes between the two national armies continued to rack up casualties.

Turkey has sent thousands of troops into the area to support Syrian insurgents holed up there, but hasn’t been able to stop the Russian-backed Syrian government offensive to retake the Idlib province.

A Syrian opposition war monitor said nine Syrian soldiers were also killed in Turkish drone attacks in the northwestern area.

The Turkish Defense Ministry’s statement said that the latest Syrian attack on its troops also wounded six soldiers. It did not provide further details.

The assault came as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is scheduled to depart for Moscow where he says he aims to broker a cease-fire in Syria with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Turkey and Russia are the two main power brokers in Syria and each of them support rival sides in the nine-year conflict.

“We expect to reach a shared view of the cause of the current crisis, its consequences and agree on a set of measures to overcome it,” Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said about the upcoming meeting with the Turkish leader.

Russian officials have said they hold Turkey responsible for the collapse of a cease-fire agreement reached in Sochi, Russia in 2018. They say Ankara has failed to honor the deal and rein in militants who continued attacking Syrian and Russian targets.

Earlier Wednesday, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov assailed Turkey for shielding “terrorists” in Idlib, a statement that reflected Moscow’s forceful posture ahead of the Syria talks.

In a statement, Konashenkov pointed out that under the 2018 agreement with Russia, Turkey was obliged to ensure that militants in Idlib pull 15-20 kilometers (10-12 miles) away from the de-escalation zone along with their heavy weapons. Instead of that, he argued, al-Qaida-linked militants “and other terrorist groups pushed moderate rebels north toward the border with Turkey.”

Konashenkov also assailed the West for turning a blind eye to Turkish military action in Syria “in violation of international law” and treating Turkish threats to destroy Syrian army units as a “legitimate self-defense.”

Syrian opposition activists reported intense clashes near the government-held town of Saraqeb that sits on a major highway that links Syria’s two largest cities, Damascus and Aleppo. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an opposition war monitor, said Turkish drone attacks near Saraqeb killed nine Syrian soldiers.

Clashes between Turkish and Syrian forces in northwestern Syria have killed more than 50 Turkish troops in the past month, including 33 soldiers killed Thursday in a single airstrike.

RELATED

ATHENS - Potentially dangerous conditions for the start of wildfires are expected to prevail in eastern Greece over the weekend, including in the Attica region and the Aegean, according to the latest forecast of the Athens National Observatory meteo service(meteo.

Top Stories

General News

FALMOUTH, MA – The police in Falmouth have identified the victim in an accident involving a car plunging into the ocean on February 20, NBC10 Boston reported.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

General News

PHILADELPHIA – The Federation of Hellenic Societies of Philadelphia and Greater Delaware Valley announced that the Evzones, the Presidential Guard of Greece will be participating in the Philadelphia Greek Independence Day Parade on March 20.

Video

Woman Fatally Shot while Pushing Stroller on Upper East Side

NEW YORK — A 20-year-old woman was fatally shot Wednesday night while she pushed her infant daughter in a stroller on the Upper East Side, police said.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.