BEIRUT, LEBANON (1:30 A.M.) – The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) is preparing to launch a new offensive in northwest Syria after a successful campaign in the southern provinces of Al-Quneitra and Daraa, a military source told Al-Masdar News this evening.
According to the military source, the elite Tiger Forces will head towards the Idlib Governorate axis in the next few weeks, claiming that they will concentrate on retaking the Al-Ghaab Plain and Jisr Al-Shughour District.
The source added that the Tiger Forces will move towards the Idlib Governorate once they have fully defeated the Islamic State (ISIS) in the Yarmouk Basin region of southwest Daraa.
At the same time, the Syrian Republican Guard and 4th Armored Division will be heading to the Jabal Turkmen and Jabal Al-Akrad regions in northern Latakia.
The Republican Guard and 4th Division will be tasked with retaking these aforementioned regions in northern Latakia, while also securing the Turkish border.
These offensives will arguably be the most difficult battles this year for the Syrian Army, as the jihadist rebels in this region of Idlib and Latakia are well-armed and well-trained.
Furthermore, the jihadist rebels in southwest Idlib and northern Latakia have a large number of foreign combatants, which will make these battles all the more important for the Russian and Syrian forces.
Perhaps the Syrian Army’s largest obstacle during this offensive will be the Turkish military, who has setup observation posts in this region of northwest Syria.
The Turkish military’s observation posts have often blocked the Syrian Army from advancing towards the jihadist-held areas, while also proving to be launching points for hard-line groups like Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham and the Turkestan Islamic Party.
The jihadist rebels in this region have also launched several attacks with their armed drones on the Russian military’s Hmeymim Airbase in southwest Latakia.
For the Russian military, this offensive will be incredibly important because it will secure their largest installation inside Syria.