On Monday, Syrian rebels thwarted a fresh incursion attempt by Russian Special Forces into the southern countryside of Idleb province, field sources said.
Clashes have been reported in the Tel Ja’afar area as Russia’s forces used advanced military equipment backed by heavy artillery fire.
Rebels also clashed with regime forces in the Kabina area in the northern countryside of Lattakia, as regime forces press to cut a supply route between rebels in Idleb and Bashar al-Assad’s hometown coastal region.
The artillery and rocket attacks continued on Idleb region, which is home to some 3 million people.
On Friday, three women were killed and four children were wounded when the regime’s artillery fire struck the Jisr al-Shughour region.
On Thursday, the regime attacked a marketplace in the village of al-Janudiya near the Turkish border, leaving 10 people dead and 14 wounded, according to the White Helmets.
The de-escalation zone is currently home to some four million civilians, including hundreds of thousands displaced in recent years by regime forces from throughout the war-weary country.
Most of Idleb province and parts of neighbouring Aleppo and Lattakia provinces are controlled by Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham, a jihadist group led by Syria’s former al-Qaeda affiliate.
Assad, who now controls around 60 percent of the country, has vowed to reclaim the rest, including Idleb.
Eight years of war in Syria has killed 560,000 people and driven half the pre-war population of 22 million from their homes, including more than 6 million as refugees to neighbouring countries.
This article was edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.