1. Three doctors and a nurse tested positive for the novel coronavirus in Syria’s northwest Idleb governorate, the first cases to emerge in the region, raising fears it could rapidly spread through densely populated camps for internally displaced Syrians. Al-Jazeera reported that seven specialist health centers were set up in Idleb and Aleppo to respond to the health crisis. Schools in the area will close as of Saturday until further notice, suggesting a return to remote learning, which had been in place until earlier this month.
2. The Iranian authorities announced Saturday the killing of a senior Iranian Revolutionary Guards officer named Ibrahim Asmi in Syria, Al-Masdar reported. “Asmi was killed in the last few days in Syria,” according to the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps commander, Rustam Ali Rafii. The Iranian Revolutionary Guards did not provide more details about the death of Asmi, however, there have been reports of fresh attacks by the Islamic State in eastern Syria.
3. Russia’s air defense systems intercepted an unknown drone attack on the Hemeimeem airbase in the coastal province of Lattakia on Saturday. At Hemeimeem, AFP reported that Russia uses Pantsir S1 and Tor-M2 air defence systems to intercept drones, along with state of the art S-400 batteries. Older S-300 models are stationed at its naval base in Tartous, further south.
4. Iran’s Ambassador to the Netherlands Alireza Kazemi Abadi affirmed his country’s rejection of the new resolution by the Organization for Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) executive council regarding Syria, SANA reported. Kazemi Abadi described the draft resolution as unbalanced, having political motivations, and another step on the path of the politicization of the organization, in addition to causing disputes among its members.
5. At least 35 pro-Iranian militia fighters were killed in an unidentified attack in eastern Syria on Friday, reports confirmed. Two leaders were among those targeted in the assault that struck a convoy near the Syrian side of the Syrian-Iraqi border, near the city of Albukamal in the Deir ez-Zor governorate, local sources told Anadolu Agency. A number of military vehicles were destroyed in the attack.
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.