BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:00 P.M.) – The Turkish-backed militants continued their push towards the strategic city of Saraqib on Wednesday, as their forces managed to capture more ground west of their former stronghold.
Backed by Turkish artillery, the National Liberation Front (NLF) and their jihadist allies from Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) and the Turkestan Islamic Party (TIP) managed to capture the town of Afis near the northwestern axis of Saraqib.
The advance by the Turkish-backed militants comes hours after their forces captured the town of Al-Salihiyah, which is located near the Aleppo-Latakia Highway (M-4).
It appears that the Turkish-backed militants will reach the outskirts of Saraqib in the coming hours if the Syrian Arab Army troops at this axis do not find a way to halt this latest push.
Over the weekend, the Syrian government announced the reopening of the Aleppo-Damascus Highway (M-5) for the first time in eight years, following the capture of all the militant-held territories along this imperative roadway.
Should the Syrian Army lose Saraqib, the militants will once again have a presence along this strategic roadway in northwestern Syria.