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As the Syrian regime advances ... Trump calls Erdogan and calls on Russia to stop its support for Assad's "atrocities"

2020-02-17T03:05:48.400Z



The White House reported that US President Donald Trump called on Russia to end its support for the "atrocities" committed by the Syrian regime in the north of the country, expressing US concern about the violence in the Idlib region which is witnessing progress of the regime forces.

The White House said that Trump had telephoned his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and thanked him for Turkey's efforts to prevent a humanitarian catastrophe.

Trump expressed Washington's desire to see the end of Russian support for what he described as the atrocities of the Bashar al-Assad regime, and to find a political solution to the Syrian conflict.

This phone call comes in conjunction with the progress of the regime forces in northern Syria, as it announced its control over the city of Aleppo in full, as part of its attack on the last opposition strongholds in the northwest of the country.

With the support of Russian aviation, the Syrian government forces have continued their offensive against Idlib and areas in the provinces of Aleppo and Lattakia since last December, killing more than 380 civilians, according to the Syrian Observatory, and the displacement of more than 800,000 people, according to the United Nations.

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The latest field developments
The bombing of the Syrian regime left a number of wounded, and caused extensive destruction in the city of Tal Abyad in the countryside of Raqqa, in which five civilians were killed by a car bomb.

Also, a number of Turkish soldiers stationed in Sheikh Aqil area in Aleppo countryside were wounded by the shelling of the Syrian regime.

The Al-Jazeera correspondent reported earlier that the Turkish army sent new military reinforcements to its units stationed in the Syrian Idlib governorate.

He added that these reinforcements included seventy military vehicles, armored ambulances, jamming systems and special forces soldiers, and he explained that the military convoy arrived at the Al-Mastouma camp near Jericho.

The Turkish forces had previously established two basic bases for their forces in Idlib, inside Taftanaz military airport and in the camp of Al-Mastumah.

In a related development, the Al-Jazeera correspondent in Syria reported that Russian planes launched intense raids on the town of Anjar in the northern countryside of Aleppo, and that regime forces bombed the town with two ballistic missiles.

The reporter also reported that the regime forces had taken control of the city of Andan, north of Aleppo, and that they were surrounding a Turkish military observation point in Andan hill, and said that the regime forces were controlling the remaining parts of the city of Aleppo in the north of the country completely.

On Sunday, according to the official Syrian media, the forces of the regime took control of about thirty villages and towns north and west of Aleppo, most notably Huritan, Andan and Kafr Hamra.

This comes as the Syrian opposition factions, backed by the Turkish army, started yesterday (Sunday) a major attack targeting the regime forces' control areas in the western countryside of Aleppo.

In a context related to these developments, Human Rights Watch called on defense officials in Europe to pressure Russian President Vladimir Putin to end the humanitarian crisis in the Syrian province of Idlib.

During the Munich Security Conference, the organization's executive director Kenneth Roth said that Russia is the main factor in ending the worsening crisis in Idlib Governorate.

Source: aljazeera

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