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A Syrian rebel and a war monitor said Russian air strikes had resumed against insurgents in Syria’s northwestern Idlib province on Tuesday after several weeks.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has sworn to recapture every inch of Syria and has made big gains against rebels since Russia joined his war effort in 2015.

Last week, a source close to Damascus said the government was preparing a phased offensive to recover Idlib province, but Turkey, whose army has a string of observation posts around the edge of the rebel area, has warned against such an assault.

Russian air raids ceased in and around Idlib on August 15, but pro-Syrian government forces have maintained an aerial bombardment and shelling against rebels there, the war monitor, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said.

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The rebel source and the Observatory both said the air strikes were in the countryside near Jisr al-Shughour on the western edge of the rebels’ northwestern territory.

Russian, Turkish and Iranian leaders are due to meet on Sept. 7 in Iran and are expected to discuss the situation in northwestern Syria.

– Reuters

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