US to set up new military base in northeastern Syria | AMN

The US-led coalition will establish a new military base for the FSA-affiliated Maghawir al-Thawra group in al-Shaddadi town, northeastern Syria, the political advisor of FSA, Abu Yacoub, said.

According to the advisor, the aim of this new garrison is to deploy the US-backed fighters who will eventually attempt to capture the ISIS-held Deir Ezzor city.

Up to 150 fully-equipped fighters will be deployed to the new base.

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Afrin 30.06.2017 | Colonel Cassad

On the one hand it is a common phenomenon, but in the current environment, when Turkey constantly spins the flywheel charges the Kurds of terrorism, this shooting and shelling on the border can be a handy excuse that would allow Turkey to finally justify the invasion of Afrin. Social.networks already walking called “the Sword of the Euphrates”, as a possible name of the operation the Turkish army by analogy with the operations of Dzharablus and al-Baba, who was called “the Shield of the Euphrates”. Various sources note the high concentration of Turkish troops and Turkish-controlled fighters vs Afrin.

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Turkish military ready to target YPG-held Afrin, Tal Rifat | Daily Sabah

The Turkish military is gearing up for an all-out offensive on areas currently held by the PKK Syrian affiliate Democratic Union Party (PYD) and its People’s Protection Units (YPG) militia in northern Syria, military sources told Daily Sabah.

The Turkish military is expected to launch an operation near the Turkish border town of Kilis to take the PYD-held Afrin, Tell Rifaat and Minnigh Military Airport in a move that Ankara has insinuated for a while.

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Afrin – On the brink of an invasion | Colonel Cassad

In the evening, reports appeared (mostly on pro-Turkish resources) that Russia allegedly relinquished military police forces from Afrin in those areas where the invasion of the Turkish army and the militants controlled by it can be started, and in the canton there are supposedly only 14 personnel.

According to other sources, including and in Afrin, the Russian contingent is still in Kafr Jana. No Official confirmations or denials of this yet. Over Afrin a Russian spy plane has been seen.

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Turkey launches offensive against the YPG in Syria

What lies ahead? For some time, Turkey has been moving troops and weapons to Kilis, which is located just north of Azaz-Mare – which is east of the YPG-controlled area of Afrin. Meanwhile, Idlib, where Turks and Russians are planning to enforce the de-conflicting zone, is south of Afrin. In other words, Turkey will have to prevent YPG attacks against Azaz-Mare and protect its troops stationed in Idlib by pacifying the YPG elements in Afrin. It remains to be seen whether the military build-up in Kilis is limited to the de-conflicting zone in Idlib or part of a broader plan involving Afrin.

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Kurds blow up Turkish radar station, Turks prepare to attack | AMN

With many Turkish airstrikes hitting Kurdish-held areas of northern Syria again today, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) responded on Thursday afternoon by destroying a Turkish radar station across the border from Tall Abyad.

The Turkish Armed Forces have reportedly drawn up plans to capture the Kurdish-held town of Tall Abyad and bring it under rebel control in a cross-border offensive comparable to the Euphrates Shield offensive last year.

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Turkey deploys military bases in Northern Syria | Colonel Cassad

The base will obviously serve different purposes.

1. The control of the FSA militants and affiliated groups in order to avoid destruction of the balance that gave the opportunity to Turkey to return to the big game.

2. Conduct a local anti-Kurdish operations against Rojava (similar objects are likely to be deployed in the Western part of the Turks controlled the territory for operations against Afrin).

3. The intensification of intelligence-technical intelligence in Northern Syria.

4. The basing of units of the regular army, who represent the military presence in the region (modeled on the Turkish military base in Iraq).

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Kurds choose Russia | Reuters

YPG spokesman Redur Xelil told Reuters the agreement had been concluded on Sunday and that Russian troops had already arrived at the position in the northwestern region of Afrin with troop carriers and armored vehicles. “It is the first (agreement) of its kind,” he said in a written message.

Kafr Jina – the area where the Russian deployment is being set up – has previously been shelled by Turkish forces from across the nearby frontier, Xelil said. He declined to say how many Russian troops had arrived in Kafr Jina.

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Raqqa, Deir Hafir, Deir ez-Zor. 18.03.2017 | Colonel Cassad

Overall, the strategic situation for the Caliphate continues to deteriorate and the actions of the SAA, Russia, the Kurds and the United States, creating the preconditions for applying a decisive defeat of the Caliphate in Syria during 2017, after which it can cease to exist in the format of the state have lost all the key towns and going to the more traditional strategy of terrorist war.

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Meeting in Antalya | Colonel Cassad

Russia in this situation, advocates of Assad, bargaining for a new territorial gains in Northern Syria and striving to achieve interaction between Assad and the Kurds to pull the Kurds out of a too strong alliance with the United States. At this stage, the Kurds have already passed the Syrian army three villages to the southwest of Manbij, but fully buffer zone is still not formed. While to the West of Manbij fighting continues between the Kurds and the FSA, where both parties bear the loss in killed, wounded and prisoners. There are losses in clashes between the SAA and FSA.

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About the crashed MiG-21 in the province of Hatay | Colonel Cassad

Yesterday near the Syrian-Turkish border, the Syrian air force lost a MiG-21. The car fell on Turkish territory in Hatay province. The Turkish military closer to the night moved to the site of the crash in which the pilot was not, as he had to bail out. In the end, the Turks found a wounded pilot, who is now in a Turkish hospital, where he was given necessary help.

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Manbij blocked | Colonel Cassad

The United States also is not interested in Erdogan taking Manbij, so a few SOF units crossed the Euphrates and moved to the North from Manija to indicate where borders that Erdogan should not go.
Erdogan, however, has not left hopes to take Manbij, but the current situation puts him in a difficult position, as the active actions against Manbij can lead to clashes with SAA and Russian and American military. Certainly, the theme Manbij will be one of the most important in the discussion of the Syrian issue between Putin and Erdogan on March 9-10. Russia will certainly try to convince Erdogan that Manbij he does not need. Erdogan will listen to reason? We will see in a week.

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Syrian buffer for Erdogan | Colonel Cassad

Erdogan was not impressed by the demonstration of us special forces in the area Manbij. As a consequence, the Kurds played a different card. The representatives of the SDF invited the SAA to take a large piece of territory between Turks and Manbij, forming a kind of buffer zone, which will cover Manbij from the West, as Erdogan obviously does not want to go to war with Syria and its allies.

In General, we are seeing the active phase of the process of redistribution of spheres of influence in Northern Syria.

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Euphrates shield. 6 months later | Colonel Cassad

The maps clearly demonstrate that the issue of the expulsion of the Caliphate from Northern Syria was dependent on the good will of Turkey, which after they stop their dalliances with the Caliphate and ran across to the camp of the Russian-Iranian coalition, helped to push the “black” from the Syrian-Turkish border. Of course, this was not done out of altruistic reasons, and in the framework of countering the threat of establishing an independent Kurdistan.

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Tadif taken | Colonel Cassad

Thus, without high-profile victories, the SAA during the offensive North of Aleppo has freed more than 500 square kilometers of territory of the province. This is a logical consequence of a delayed victory in the “Mother of all battles”, as the release of a large number of troops, allowed the SAA more confidence to conduct offensive operations against the Caliphate, using a partial truce with the “green”. While maintaining the ceasefire regime and the implementation by Turkey of its obligations, the SAA in the coming months will greatly expand the monitoring area to the East of Aleppo and will be able to finally solve an old problem with the safety of the route Khanasser-Aleppo.

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