The Idlib de-escalation zone is becoming by no means the demilitarised zone it was intended to be. The lack of clear control and unified management of the pro-Turkish militias by Ankara is taking its toll.
Turkish mercenary units were left to their own devices. Also, groups with radical views were concentrated in the region. It is predictable that sooner or later the armed groups that do not have a clear objective and purpose will start to redistribute the groups’ zones of influence.
This is what has happened. Over the past week, civilians have witnessed daily shootings and sabotage attacks by radical militants on pro-Turkish militant outposts and strongholds.
Arab media report an improvised explosive device detonated on the route of a convoy of pick-up trucks carrying Turkish mercenaries in the town of Arnaba, 30km southwest of Idlib. The explosion killed six militants and wounded ten others.
Also, Islamists from the Harakat al-Sham group attacked the headquarters of pro-Turkish militants in the area of Salqin, 26 km northwest of Idlib. More than a dozen Turkish mercenaries were killed in the clash.
The situation in Syria’s Idlib province continues to escalate amid a humanitarian and economic crisis in Turkey’s military-controlled territory. As a result of numerous clashes between various militant groups, civilians are being killed. Such illegal actions lead to a widespread socio-economic crisis and endanger the lives and health of thousands of Syrians.