BEIRUT, LEBANON (3:00 P.M.) – The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have handed over the control of a town located southwest of Manbij to the Syrian Arab Army (SAA), a source told Al-Masdar News this afternoon.
According to the source, the Syrian Democratic Forces handed over the town of Al-‘Arimeh to the Syrian Arab Army as they take security precautions ahead of the Turkish military’s incursion in the Manbij region.
The source added that the Syrian Arab Army is in contact with some members of the Syrian Democratic Forces in Manbij; however, there is no agreement to allow them to enter the town, nor was the transfer of this town considered a move towards handing over Manbij.
Manbij is strategically important to the Syrian military because of its proximity to Aleppo city and the Euphrates River.
The town is also located along the key Aleppo-Raqqa Highway; if lost, the Syrian Army and Kurdish-led forces will no longer have a direct route to the provincial capital of the Al-Raqqa Governorate.