BEIRUT, LEBANON (7:30 A.M.) – The Syrian Arab Army’s (SAA) main objective in 2020 will be the key city of Jisr Al-Shughour in the western countryside of the Idlib Governorate, a military source told Al-Masdar News.
According to the source, the Syrian Arab Army’s upcoming offensives in northwestern Syria will concentrate on putting the military within position of striking Jisr Al-Shughour from several axes.
In particular, the Syrian Arab Army will focus on two major axes: Al-Ghaab (directly south of Jisr Al-Shughour) and northeast Latakia (southwest of Jisr Al-Shughour).
At the Al-Ghaab Plain, the Syrian Arab Army will attempt to clear the northern part of this farming region, which is currently under the control of Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham and the Hurras Al-Deen Group.
Meanwhile, in northeastern Latakia, the Syrian Army will attempt to capture the imperative town of Kabani, which is a key area that overlooks the northern part of Al-Ghaab and southwestern Jisr Al-Shughour.
The Syrian Army’s previous attacks on Kabani have led to many jihadists killed; however, they have not been able to enter the town.
With reports surfacing of the elite 25th Special Mission Forces Division (formerly Tiger Forces) deploying to the Kabani axis, this front will likely be a focal point in the coming weeks.
All of these operations should eventually lead the Syrian Army to the strategic city of Jisr Al-Shughour.
Jisr Al-Shughour is the de-facto capital for the jihadist rebels in Syria, as it is home to some of the largest groups, including Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham, Hurras Al-Deen group, and the Turkestan Islamic Party.
Its capture is not only important to the Syrian Army’s high command, but also, their Russian and Chinese allies.
There is a large number of foreign jihadists currently active in the Jisr Al-Shughour District, with the majority being militants from the Russian Caucasus and China’s Xinjiang autonomous region.
To capture Jisr Al-Shughour would be a decisive blow to the jihadist rebels that have controlled this city and its surroundings since the Spring of 2015.