Russia announced the suspension of joint patrols with Turkey on the international highway Aleppo-Lattakia (M4), due to “increased terrorist attacks”.
“The joint Russian-Turkish patrols on the M4 highway in Idlib have been stopped due to the continuous provocations of the militants in the region,” said Maria Zakharova, a spokeswoman for the Foreign Ministry, in a press conference, Thursday, August 13th.
Zakharova explained that the factions in Idlib are using drones to attack the Hmeimim base in Lattakia countryside, adding that “the continuous attempts to attack the Russian base in Hmeimim are of particular concern”.
Zakharova considered that “lasting stability in the de-escalation zone in Idlib is possible, only if the terrorists are neutralized”.
Idlib is subject to an agreement between Russia and Turkey, since last March 5, which stipulated the conduct of joint Russian-Turkish patrols between the villages of Tarnaba, east of Idlib, and Ain Hor, in the southwest of the governorate.
The implementation of the agreement witnessed major provocations by the militants, as the patrols did not reach the end of their course according to the agreement until July 22, as a result of the provocations and moves that the militants were taking along the road.
It is noteworthy that the last patrol was, last Wednesday, as it set off from the village of Tarnbah in the eastern countryside of Idlib, and reached Ain Hor in its western countryside, which is the full distance according to the agreement, where the Turkish occupation vehicles returned to the starting place, while the Russian vehicles continued their way towards Lattakia Governorate.