UN finalising preparations for upcoming Syria peace talks | Xinhuanet

The UN Office of the Special Envoy for Syria said Friday that the final planning is underway to prepare the ground ahead of intra-Syria talks which was expected to kick off on Feb.23.

“The special envoy is putting the finishing touches on the participation of the Syrian parties in the initial round of intra-Syrian negotiations,” the special envoy’s spokesperson Yara Sharif told reporters.

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Al-Bab. 17.02.2017 | Colonel Cassad

In my opinion, the real war and especially the battle of al-Bab, revealed serious institutional weaknesses of the Turkish army, which in peacetime was not so obvious. This applies both to the training of mechanized units and command structures responsible for operational planning. As a result, for several months, one of the strongest NATO armies can’t defeat a group of militants numbering about 3-3,5 thousand men in al-Bab, with at least a five-fold superiority in manpower, not to mention the overwhelming superiority in artillery, armored vehicles and aircraft.

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Daesh Areas of Influence | globalcoalition

In January, Daesh lost a further 1000sq kilometres of territory in Iraq, and an additional 1000sq kilometres of territory in Syria. This means the group have now lost 62% of the territory they controlled in Iraq in August 2014, and 30% in Syria, as they are continually defeated on the battlefield. Key Daesh battlefield losses in January were to Iraqi forces in the Ninawa and Al Anbar Governorates, where the majority of losses were in eastern Mosul. In Syria, Daesh lost additional territory in Halab and Ar Raqqah Provinces. The majority of Daesh losses were in Ar Raqqah Province, to Syrian Democratic Forces advancing toward Tabqa Dam (Sadd al Furat).

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