DAMASCUS, SYRIA (5:18 P.M.) – The town of Salqin in northwestern Idlib countryside became a scene of infighting on Saturday, as heavy clashes erupted between jihadists of Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS, Syrian Al-Qaeda branch) and local residents.

According to reports, firefights were instigated by masked HTS militants trying to arrest civilians without a reason.

Local residents began gathering at the scene in a bid to prevent jihadists from detaining their fellow citizens, which prompted militants to open fire at protesters.

The latter, in turn, carried their own guns which they had not hesitated to use, once jihadists began shooting.

As a result of violent firefight, at least 5 people have been confirmed dead, both among HTS and local civilians, with clashes still ongoing in Salqin.

Besides, according to local sources, residents of the town have called Ahrar Al-Sham in for help, and the islamist group responded the request by sending a unit to Salqin to drive HTS out of the town.

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Writer, translator. Former communications engineer. Contributor at both AMN Russian and AMN English.

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