ILLUSTRATIVE: Turkish soldiers watch as smoke billows from the border town of Ras al-Ain on October 12, 2019 [Nazeer Al-khatib/AFP]
The attack, which took placed on January 31, targeted a Turkish post located near the town of Muhambal on the M4 highway. Turkish forces established several positions along the highway, which links the port city of Lattakia with Aleppo city, last year.
In a brief statement, the Turkish Ministry of National Defense identified the slain soldier as Sergeant Basri Demirel, an infantry specialist. Two other soldiers were wounded in the same attack and are receiving treatment now.
— T.C. Millî Savunma Bakanlığı (@tcsavunma) February 3, 2021
So far, no group has claimed responsibility for the attack. Several previous attacks on Turkish forces in Greater Idlib were carried out by a jihadi group calling itself “Saryat Ansar Abu Baker As-Siddiq.”
Thousands of heavily-armed Turkish troops are currently deployed in more than 60 posts, bases and camps in different parts of Greater Idlib.
Turkish troops were deployed in the region over the last two years to allegedly counter jihadi groups and reopen the M4 highway. None of these objectives have been achieved so far.
Greater Idlib jihadists have apparently grown frustrated with the Turkish military presence in the region. Turkish troops, which shielded these jihadists from Syrian government forces, are now being attacked by them.
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