Next Stop Idlib: Erdogan Announces Turkey's New 'Serious' Operation in Syria

Sunday, 08 Oct, 2017

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron discussed the current situation in Syria and Iraq via phone on Saturday.

Turkish military deployed fully-equipped commando units as part of its reinforcements for Syria's western Idlib province along the border, Anadolu Agency media team reported from the scene.

"We won't allow a terror corridor along our Syrian border", he stressed, adding that the operation aims to provide Idlib's security. "Today a very serious operation is ongoing in Idlib and this will continue".

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday "a serious operation" was beginning in Syria's Idlib and a Syrian rebel official said his group was preparing to enter the area with the backing of Turkish forces.

Erdogan said the operation, which has not yet seen Turkish troops cross the border into Syria, was being conducted in coordination with Russian Federation.

Currently, Idlib is mostly controlled by Tahrir al-Sham, a militant group led by al-Nusra Front terrorist group (banned in Russia), al-Qaeda's former Syria affiliate.

In July Tahrir al-Sham seized land around the Bab al-Hawa border crossing between Syria and Turkey, bringing much of the frontier area inside Syrian under its control.

Yankees win again, but AL East title hopes in trouble
Over the last three innings, the Astros eked out just one hit, a single by Carlos Beltran , and once more tensions began to mount. Mitch Moreland became Boston's first baserunner with a one-out double and scored when Devers snapped an 0-for-15 with his double.

Erdogan, who was speaking his AK Party's 26th Consultation and Assessment meeting said that, "We will never allow the formation of a terror corridor along our Syrian border".

Russia, along with Iran, is the key backer of President Bashar al-Assad and Moscow's military intervention inside Syria is widely seen as tipping the balance in the conflict.

UPFRONT: Has the Syrian opposition lost the war? "We expect that the large-scale operation that has been prepared will be launched perhaps within the next 24 hours", the rebel said.

"Now this step has been taken, and it is underway", he said, adding that Turkish forces were not yet involved and that it was a rebel operation so far.

Turkey has been one of the biggest supporters of rebels fighting Assad during the six-and-a-half year war, but its focus has evolved from ousting him to securing its border.

Idlib's population has ballooned to at least two million as thousands of civilians and combatants have left areas seized by the Syrian army in other parts of the country, with the help of Russian jets and Iran.