SYRIAN WAR REPORT – MARCH 2-4, 2019: MULTIPLE SOLDIERS KILLED IN MAJOR ESCALATION IN NORTHERN HAMA | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


SYRIAN WAR REPORT – MARCH 2-4, 2019: MULTIPLE SOLDIERS KILLED IN MAJOR ESCALATION IN NORTHERN HAMA

In the morning of March 3, fighters of the al-Qaeda-affiliated group Ansar al-Tawhid carried out a major attack on several positions of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) near the town of Masasneh in northern Hama. A military source told SouthFront that more than 16 SAA soldiers were killed in the attack. 6 Ansar al-Tawhid members were eliminated.

The Ansar al-Tawhid attack was launched from the Idlib demilitarized zone, which had been established under a Russian-Turkish agreement in September 2018. According to the agreement, such groups should not be deployed within the zone and heavy weapons belonging to militants should be withdrawn from the area. However, these terms have never been met.

Both Syrian foreign and defense ministries have commented on the attack by warning that the Damascus government is not going to tolerate terrorists attacking SAA positions and civilians.

By the evening of March 3, it had appeared that the SAA resumed preparations for a military action in northern Hama and southern Idlib. Pro-militant sources revealed that civilians living within the zone of the supposed operation received warnings that they should stay away from militant positions. Pro-government sources speculated that the advance is imminent because the de-militarization zone agreement de-facto failed. It should be noted that last week the Syrian Air Force delivered several precise strikes on terrorist infrastructure in the provinces of Idlib and Hama.

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