Turkey runs second lone patrol on M4 highway in Syria’s Idlib

IDLIB, Syria (North Press) – On Thursday, the Turkish forces conducted a patrol on the M4 Highway in the southern countryside of Idlib after combing the road.

This is the second time that Turkey had conducted a patrol without Russian forces.

The last Russian-Turkish joint patrol was conducted on the M4 Highway on the 25th of August and was targeted by attackers with RPGs. 

Local sources told North Press that the Turkish patrol consisting of eight armored vehicles drove on the Latakia-Aleppo Highway on Thursday morning.

Jabhat al-Watani and Hayat Tehrir, two Turkish-backed armed opposition groups accompanying the patrol, clashed during the course of the patrol, though the patrol completed its course as scheduled.

The patrol coincided with shelling by government forces targeting the locations of the armed opposition groups in towns in the southern countryside of Idlib.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights stated that the Turkish forces combed the patrol line on the M4 highway accompanied by engineering teams to remove and dismantle mines.

In the middle of August, Turkey conducted a lone patrol on M4 Highway, from Tarnaba to the western countryside of Jisr al-Shughour.

At that time, a joint patrol was scheduled to leave, accompanied by the Russians, but the Russian forces did not accompany it.

On the 21st of August, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov indicated that “joint patrols with Turkey were suspended on the M4 Highway until calm returns.”

On the 23rd of August, the Turkish forces searched the entire road for mines and IEDs.

Reporting by Barra Shami