View of Aleppo. 24 Nov 2016
The war in Syria
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The Syrian army successfully conducts an offensive against militants-held areas of Aleppo. The pace of progress will allow you to capture the entire city by year-end without any new agreements between the U.S. and Russia on Syria.
“Dawn of victory”
Over the past few days, the territory of Eastern Aleppo, under the control of armed Syrian opposition groups, has decreased by more than a third. On Monday, November 28, reported the Syrian Observatory for human rights (SOHR, based in the UK). “This is the biggest defeat of the opposition in Aleppo since 2012”, — said the Director of the center for Rami Abdulrahman.
Soon, the Syrian state news Agency SANA confirmed that over the past two days, the government army was “purged of terrorists” and “restored security and stability” four blocks North-East of Aleppo. In particular, we are talking about the capture area as-Sahour, which actually enabled the army to divide the opposition occupied part of the city into two unequal parts.
In a conversation with Reuters, an anonymous representative of the armed opposition denied the loss of as-Sahur, while another source from the side of the rebels said “the situation is still not clear.” The fighter of the government forces told Reuters that the army has left the rebels a narrow corridor for the passage to the South in order to several hours to completely clean the Northern (lower) part is occupied by the opposition territory.
By mid-day Monday the liberation of the North-Eastern districts of Aleppo from the opposition groups ended, Reuters reported. According to the correspondent BBC Riama Dalati, the militants agreed to move South to avoid encirclement. The freed blocks divided between government forces and Kurdish groups, which occupies a large area in the North of Aleppo, he said.
Syrian troops liberated 40% of the area of the Eastern part of the city, installed full control of the 12 districts, reported in the Russian Centre of reconciliation of the warring parties in Syria, “Interfax”.
The rapid progress of the Syrian army in recent days is part of a large-scale operation on the final disposition of the cauldron of the Syrian opposition in Eastern Aleppo. After several months of siege and several unsuccessful attempts of the armistice, November 15, Damascus announced the beginning of the offensive, code-named “dawn of victory”.
According to SOHR, the Russian air force supports operation with air strikes. However, the Russian defense Ministry refutes these allegations: the air strikes are made only on the territory controlled by fighters in the provinces of Idlib and HOMS — but not in Aleppo, which is still in force, the cessation of air attacks.
After a pause: looks like a besieged Aleppo
October 25, the official representative of the Ministry of defense of Russia Igor Konashenkov said that Air and space forces (VKS) and the Syrian air force the last seven days has not carried out air strikes on Aleppo…
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To take the city before the end of the year
Source The Washington Post in the us administration argues that the full return of Aleppo, the Syrian army takes about 60 days and it can happen to the inauguration of the new US President Donald trump on January 20. The newspaper writes that the U.S. Secretary of state John Kerry is making every effort for a diplomatic resolution of the situation around Aleppo to the resignation of the us government. However, in Moscow the prospects of the liberation of Aleppo is more optimistic. On Monday evening, “Interfax” with reference to “an informed source in Moscow” said that the full liberation of Aleppo could take place before the end of the year. The same anonymous source said that agreements in principle with current government of the USA can be expected — the political process will begin with the administration of the trump.
That East of Aleppo will soon be occupied by the Syrian army, sure, and the Deputy Chairman of the Duma Committee on defense Andrei Krasov: “We see that every day more and more districts of Aleppo came under the control of the armed forces of Syria. The terrorists in Aleppo, remained there a short time, if they lay down their arms and surrender” (quoted by “Interfax”).
Take all of Aleppo under the control of government forces until the end of the year is quite possible, as the operation was well-trained Syrian army, says the Director of the center “Russia — East — West” Vladimir Sotnikov. According to him, the opposition deliberately tries not to make contact with the army and retreating in order to regroup and launch a counteroffensive.
Side of the offensive shows interest in easing the humanitarian crisis in the city. On Sunday, the news Agency SANA reported that government troops helped to get out of the besieged neighborhoods of 1,5 thousand civilians.
Resolution of humanitarian problems and promote actions of the Kurdish forces in the North of the city. Last weekend they attacked the positions of militants and occupied several neighborhoods, including a small hospital. On Monday, Salih Muslim, the leader of the party “Democratic Union” (PYD, the political organization of Syrian Kurds), has announced that a few days of the military operation in Kurdish-controlled part of Aleppo moved from 6 thousand to 10 thousand refugees from the area of combat operations.
For its part, the monitoring center SOHR has only 2.5 million refugees from East Aleppo, who moved to the Kurdish area, and 1.7 million refugees who crossed over to the territory under the control of the government army (according to the Syrian Arab red Crescent, the territory government released a 2 thousand people). For the same two weeks of the campaign, according to SOHR, under fire of the Syrian army killed 250 civilians.
Monday to stop the violence in Aleppo called on the foreign Ministers of Britain and France. And British Boris Johnson said about the need to return to the implementation of the humanitarian plan of the UN and the Frenchman Jean-Marc Ayrault announced intention to convene in early December a Ministerial meeting of “like-minded countries” to discuss the Syrian problem.
The situation in Mosul
The operation to liberate Mosul while no breakthrough has brought. On Monday the commander of the counter-terrorism unit of the Iraqi army, Abdel Ghani al-Asadi reported that his troops since the beginning of operations destroyed 1 thousand militants of the banned terrorist organization ISIL (earlier it was reported that in the Mosul area are 5-10 thousand of Islamists).
The liberation of Mosul is Iraqi troops, Iraqi Kurdistan and the local armed forces, with air support from Western countries and military personnel from the United States. This week, American soldiers participated directly in the fighting with the Islamists, IraqiNews reported, citing the military command in Iraq. However, al-Asadi part of the US army in ground operations denied.