70 Combatants Reported Killed in Fighting in Syria’s Idlib

Forces aim to push deeper into rebel province

Clashes continue to rage in northwestern Syria, where after the collapse of a recent ceasefire Syrian forces have aimed to push into the Idlib Province and retake parts of the last rebel-held province of the country.

Reports indicate that at least 70 combatants were slain over the course of the weekend. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights also reported a number of airstrikes into southern Idlib.

After months of withdrawal agreements sending various rebel blocs into Idlib, the province ended up chiefly under the control of al-Qaeda’s Nusra Front. While some other groups were interested in making deals with the government, Nusra has tended to reject parts of ceasefires.

In this particular case, the ceasefire collapsed on the attempt to reestablish the buffer zone, which al-Qaeda has occupied. They rejected withdrawing fighters from the zone, so after a few days, the ceasefire was abandoned.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.