Turkish military operation in Idlib Governorate

The Turkish military operation in Idlib Governorate (Turkish: İdlib Hârekatı), or code-named as Idlib De-escalation Control Force activities[8] (Turkish: İdlib Gerginliği Azaltma Kontrol Gücü faaliyetleri) by Turkey, is an operation by the Turkish Armed Forces which started in October 2017, following the earlier Operation Euphrates Shield. It is the third cross-border operation by the Turkish military, following Operation Euphrates Shield and Operation Shah Euphrates.

Turkish military operation in Idlib Governorate
Part of Foreign Involvement in the Syrian Civil War and the Turkish involvement in the Syrian Civil War
Turkish flags represent observation points as of 27 November 2018
Date7 October 2017[1] – present
(2 years, 2 months and 1 week)
Executed by Turkish Armed Forces
  • The Turkish Army sets up three bases in northern Idlib to isolate the SDF in Afrin[2]
  • The Turkish Army establishes a dozen observation points in the de-escalation zones[3]
Casualties 4 killed (3 soldiers, 1 civilian), 10 wounded (9 soldiers, 1 civilian)[4][5][6][7]


The operation was launched following the 2017 Astana agreement between Turkey, Russia and Iran.


Turkish Armed Forces set up their first observation outposts in Idlib on October 2017.[9]



In February 2018 the Turkish military observation outposts were expanded in Northern and Southeastern Idlib.[10][11] On the 6 of the same month a Turkish observation was attacked by rockets and mortars resulting in a Turkish soldier being killed and wounding 5 other Turkish servicemen. The attack was conducted by Militants per Middle East Eye.[12]


On 22 May 2018, the Turkish army established the 12th and last military observation post in Idlib province amid risk of more tension with the Syrian Government and insurgent groups.[13]


On 15 September 2018, the Turkish observation posts were made an official part of the 2018 Idlib demilitarization agreement.[14]


Following the start of the 2019 Northwestern Syria offensive, Turkish observation posts exchanged artillery fire with Syrian Army units multiple times.

In late August of 2019, the Turkish observation post at Murak was fully encircled by the Syrian Army, after it captured a rebel pocket in the region.[15]


Within Syria

  • Syrian government: An unnamed source at Syria's Foreign Ministry said, "The Turkish regime must abide by what was agreed in Astana."[16][17]
  • Rojava: “Any military operation led by Turkish forces in Afrin will fail as it would elicit a harsh and unexpected response,” Rezan Gilo, head of the Defense and Self-Protection Body of Afrin, told Kurdistan 24.[18]
  • Army of Revolutionaries: Ahmed Sultan, commander of the Army of Revolutionaries, accused Turkey of selling Idlib to the Syrian regime, Iran and Russia and called upon the people of Idlib to resist the planned Turkish, Iranian, and Russian intervention in Idlib.[19]
  • Tahrir al-Sham: The Tahrir al-Sham leadership stated that anyone supporting the intervention is committing treason.[20]

International reactions

  •  Russia: The head of the Russian delegation for the Astana talks, Alexander Lavrentyev, said that Russia was ready to act as a mediator between the Syrian government and Turkey regarding the situation in Idlib.[21]

Supranational reactions

See also


  1. "First Turkish military convoy enters Syria's Idlib". 7 October 2017 via Reuters.
  2. "Turkish observation posts in Syria's Idlib". Turkish observation posts in Syria's Idlib. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  3. YPG terrorists attack Turkish military convoy in Idlib with car bomb, kill 1 civilian, injure 2 others
  4. "Turkish soldier killed in attack in Syria's Idlib province".
  5. Turkish soldier killed in northern Latakia after unknown group opens fire near border crossing
  6. Turkish soldier dies in attack on military post in Syria's Idlib
  7. https://www.trthaber.com/haber/gundem/idlibde-ilk-gozlem-noktasi-olusturuldu-338682.html
  8. "Turkish observation posts in Syria's Idlib". Turkish observation posts in Syria's Idlib. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  9. "Turkish military says sets up sixth observation post in Syria's Idlib". 15 February 2018. Retrieved 17 February 2018 via Reuters.
  10. Turkish soldier killed in attack in Syria's Idlib province
  11. Turkish army's Idlib action 'riskiest cross-border operation' to date
  12. "Full text of Turkey-Russia memorandum on Idlib revealed". The National. Retrieved 2019-08-24.
  13. "Syrian Regime Forces Surround Turkish Army Post". Asharq AL-awsat. Retrieved 2019-08-24.
  14. (www.dw.com), Deutsche Welle. "Syria demands Turkey immediately withdraw troops – News – DW – 14.10.2017". DW.COM.
  15. "Syria demands 'immediate' withdrawal of Turkish troops". Hürriyet Daily News.
  16. Kurdistan24. "Any Turkish military operation in Afrin will fail, be faced with strong resistance: Kurdish official".
  17. "أبو عراج: تركيا باعت إدلب أيضاً للنظام السوري وداعميه - ANHA". www.hawarnews.com. Archived from the original on 2018-01-23. Retrieved 2017-11-03.
  18. "Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham: The attack carried out by the factions on Idlib is a treason – AWDnews". www.awdnews.com.
  19. "Russia ready to mediate talks between Damascus, Ankara on Idlib". 30 October 2017.
  20. Final de-escalation zones agreed on in Astana
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