IED Wounds Russian, Turkish Soldiers on Joint Patrol in Syria
An improvised explosive device (IED) has wounded at least three Russian soldiers and an indeterminate number of Turkish troops carrying out a joint patrol in Syria’s northwestern Idlib Province. According to the Defense Ministry in Moscow, the device blew up shortly before 9 a.m. Syria time on Tuesday. The joint patrols along Syria’s strategic M4 highway were launched in March after Moscow and Ankara arrived at a cease-fire agreement as part of a Syrian government offensive. The offensive, launched in December, has been aimed at routing out rebels in a more-than nine-year civil war against the rule of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Russia has had troops in the area on Assad’s behalf, while Turkey has been backing anti-Assad fighters. The province is one of the last rebel-held areas.