Syrian Army’s Battle to Liberate Southern Areas Nearing: Commentator
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A political analyst and chief editor of the newspaper “Rai al-Yaum” highlighted the Syrian army’s recent victories against foreign-backed militants and said a new battle will soon begin in the southwestern parts of the Arab country.
In an editorial published in Rai al-Yaum, Abdel Bari Atwan said the Syrian army’s massive operation to recapture southwestern areas and open common borders with Jordan has neared despite US threats.
He was referring to a statement by the US State Department on Thursday, which said Washington will “take firm and appropriate measures” in response to Syrian government violations in the country’s southwest.
Atwan went on to say that in the meantime, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has pleaded for the Russian government’s help and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has stressed the use of force in light of a decline in political solutions.
Most of the leaked news strengthen the possibility that the Syrian army is poised to advance toward the southwestern regions of the Arab country, particularly Daraa, and open border crossings along the joint border with Jordan, the commentator noted.
It is most likely that this operation will start with the support of Russia after the holidays of Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of the fasting month of Ramadan, Atwan said.
After seven years of conflict, the southwest of Syria, bordering Jordan and the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, is one of the parts of the country still outside the state’s control.
President Assad’s forces have recovered swathes of territory from rebels and terrorists with the help of Russian air power and Iranian military advisers, and he has repeatedly pledged to take back “every inch”.
Assad said on Wednesday his government was still pursuing a political solution to Syria’s rebel-held southwest, but would use military force if the effort failed.
“We are giving the political process a chance,” he told al-Alam News in an interview published in an English translation by Syrian state news agency SANA.
“If that doesn’t succeed, we have no other option but to liberate it by force.”