Russian Airstrikes Hit Towns Along Syria-Turkey Border

Rebels downplay strikes, don't see likely offensive soon

Russian warplanes carried out a series of airstrikes against towns in northern Idlib Province, along the Turkish border. The strikes hit Qah and Sarmada, along with areas near Bab al-Hawa border crossing.

There was no word of casualties from the Russian strikes so far, though seven were reported slain in Syrian artillery fire at al-Atareb, which some reports from Turkey and its rebel allies tied to the Russian strikes.

Rebels tried to downplay the significance of the strikes, saying they did not see them as a prelude to new advances on the ground in Idlib. Rather, they say the Russians were trying to sow confusion with the latest strikes.

Though strikes into the rebel-dominated  part of northern Idlib aren’t unheard of, they usually have some intention, and so far it’s not clear they’ve accomplished anything, or set up any territory to change hands.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of