Field Report [April 16-22, 2018]
16 April 2018
- In Akçakale, just opposite the city of Tal Abyad, the formation of the Raqqa Military Council was announced after a meeting.
- Opposition groups in Eastern Qalamoun, to the northeast of Damascus, have claimed that the Assad regime has attacked their posts.
- An explosion that targeted SDF/YPG forces in Raqqa led to a fighter and 4 civilians being killed.
- To the east of Deir ez Zor, Daesh militants clashed amongst themselves leading to many dead and wounded.
17 April 2018
- The International Coalition executed an airborne operation to the south of Hasakah, leading to the arrest of many Daesh fighters.
- The government of Saudi Arabia has announced that they are willing to send forces to Syria under the supervision of the US-led International Coalition.
- In Dumair, the district in northeastern Damascus, rebel groups have announced that they have come to an evacuation agreement with the Assad regime with Russian mediation.
- The OPCW delegation that arrived at Douma to investigate chemical weapons use was harassed by gunfire.
18 April 2018
- To the east of Deir ez Zor, a hostage exchange deal between the SDF/YPG and Daesh militants was executed.
- The area under the control of Daesh in southern Damascus was bombarded by Assad regime forces.
- The opposition groups in the besieged territory in northern Homs have finished a round of negotiations with the Russians.
- SDF/YPG positions in Tal Rifaat were subject to bombardment by an unknown source.
19 April 2018
- HTS militants opened fire to a crowd of protestors near Idlib, resulting in 5 wounded civilians.
- As part of the evacuation deal with the Assad regime, rebel fighters and their families have started to leave Dumair.
- To the west of Daraa, the Halid Bin Walid Army, loyal to Daesh, attacked and killed 25 FSA fighters.
- Assad regime forces and their allied militias have started an offensive to take over the Yarmouk Camp in southern Damascus.
20 April 2018
- In the north of Latakia, a sudden raid led to the death of 12 regime fighters.
- The Assad regime forces’ offensive on Yarmouk Camp, which is split into two zones of territorial control, with Daesh controlling one side and the rebels the other, continues.
- In southern Hama, violent clashes between Assad regime forces and opposition groups erupted.
- The evacuees from Dumair have reached Jarablus.
21 April 2018
- Clashes erupted between HTS and Assad regime forces in Yarmouk Camp, in southern Damascus.
- Because of bombardment by Assad regime forces, 5 civilians have lost their lives in Yarmouk Camp.
- In the besieged rebel-held territory in northern Homs, 6 civilians lost their lives because of bombardment by the Assad regime.
- After the evacuation of rebels in Eastern Qalamoun, to the northeast of Damascus, Daesh militants have taken over control of many locations in the area.
22 April 2018
- In western Aleppo, the Sham Liberation Front has started a counteroffensive to HTS positions.
- The round of negotiations expected to be held between the opposition groups in the besieged rebel-held territory in northern Homs and the Russians could not be realized.
- A part of the evacuees from Eastern Qalamoun have reached the region of Afrin.
- A spokesperson for the Iraqi army announced that in last week’s cross-border attack on Daesh positions in Syria a large number of fighters were neutralized.
Last week in Syria, clashes overall have continued to decrease while at many fronts clashes continue. As an example, for this, the Assad regime and its allied militias have started an offensive to take over the Yarmouk Camp area in the south of Damascus, split territorially between Daesh and HTS. The civilians in the area have been besieged for years and now they are in a bad situation where they have many dead and wounded because of bombardments. Additionally, the Assad regime’s execution of its long-held strategy of “besiege – starve – evacuate” is proving successful for the regime, as after Eastern Ghouta, the rebels in Eastern Qalamoun, in northeastern Damascus, have come to an evacuation agreement with the Assad regime, in turn evacuating to the Euphrates Shield and Afrin territories. As for the besieged rebels in northern Homs, they have started negotiations with the Russians. While clashes with the Assad regime occur from time to time, as in the other examples, an evacuation deal might be forthcoming in the weeks ahead.