Turkey, Middle East

Turkey neutralizes 3,000+ regime elements in Idlib, Syria

151 tanks, 47 howitzers, 3 airplanes, 8 helicopters, 3 drones, 8 air defense systems destroyed, says Defense Ministry

Merve Aydogan   | 04.03.2020
Turkey neutralizes 3,000+ regime elements in Idlib, Syria

ANKARA

Turkish forces neutralized 3,136 regime elements in Syria since the start of Operation Spring Shield in the northwestern Idlib region, said the National Defense Ministry on Wednesday.

The new offensive also destroyed 151 tanks, 47 howitzers, two vehicles, three airplanes, eight helicopters, three drones, eight air defense systems.

Fifty-two multiple rocket launchers, 12 anti-tanks, 24 armored vehicles, 27 armored combat vehicles, 34 armored pick-ups and four mortars were also among the destroyed.

Turkish authorities often use the word "neutralized" to imply the elements in question surrendered or were killed or captured.

Meanwhile, the Assad regime attacks martyred two Turkish soldiers and wounded six others in Idlib, said a ministry statement.

"We wish Allah's mercy on our martyrs, and condolences to their families. We also share our condolences with the entire Turkish nation, and wish a quick recovery for our wounded personnel," it said.

Turkey announced Sunday Operation Spring Shield in Idlib after at least 34 Turkish soldiers were martyred in a Syrian regime airstrike in Idlib late February.

The soldiers were in Idlib under a deal between Turkey and Russia in late 2018, to protect civilians from attacks by the Assad regime and its allies.

Idlib, just across Turkey’s southern border, falls within a de-escalation zone laid out in the 2018 deal.

But the Syrian regime and its allies have consistently broken the terms of the agreement, launching frequent attacks inside the territory, where acts of aggression are expressly prohibited.

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