Assad regime forces and Iranian-backed militias on Sunday took control of the town of Sinjar in the province of Idleb after heavy clashes with Syrian opposition forces.
The Turkish Anadolu agency quoted its correspondents as confirming the news, saying that a group backed by Iran and loyal to the Assad regime carried out a heavy ground assault in Idleb from the south and southwest.
Over the last 24 hours, Russian warplanes provided air support to these groups, composed of Afghan fighters, according to Anadolu.
The town of Sinjar had been under the control of members of Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham and other opposition groups.
Sinjar is 50 km from the center of Idleb province, where about 100,000 civilians live in the town and surrounding villages. Recent weeks has seen a wave of displaced residents from Sinjar toward safer areas.
Last Friday, regime forces with backing from foreign militias advanced under Russian air cover in the areas northeast of the Hama province and southern Idleb as part of a continued operation which began last October.
Idleb province, the northern countryside of Hama, and the western countryside of Aleppo are included in the “de-escalation” zones agreement set out in the Astana talks in 2017 with guarantees from Russia, Iran and Turkey.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.