"And I have found both freedom and safety in my madness, the freedom of loneliness and the safety from being understood, for those who understand us enslave something in us. But let me not be too proud of my safety. Even a Thief in a jail is safe from another thief. "

Khalil Gibran (How I Became a Madman)

Lübnan Marunîleri / Yasin Atlıoğlu


Thursday, May 09, 2019

Syrian ground troops capture rebel enclave- Daily Star

BEIRUT: Syrian troops pushed their way into a northwestern rebel-held enclave Wednesday, clashing with insurgents and capturing a strategically located village at the southern edge, widening an offensive that had previously involved mainly aerial bombings and shelling.
The pro-government Central Military Media said the troops entered Kafr Nbouda, a rebel-held village on the southwestern edge of the enclave, igniting heavy clashes with the insurgents. The CMM said the government forces seized control of Kafr Nbouda after hours of fighting and began clearing it of land mines. This is the most serious challenge yet to a cease-fire in the region brokered by Russia and Turkey in September.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights confirmed the ground operation, which was launched with close air support. It also said government forces captured the village after clashes that killed at least nine soldiers and 18 rebels. There was no report of casualties in the pro-government media.
Rebel groups said they targeted government vehicles and detonated a car bomb.
Capturing Kafr Nbouda severs the link between the southern edge of the rebel-held enclave in Hama province with its western and eastern flanks, as well farther to the north. Activist-operated media group Enab Baladi called Kafr Nbouda the “first line of defense of Idlib.”
Rebel spokesperson Nabji al-Mustafa confirmed the government seized the village, adding his fighters remain on its edge. He said the new fighting has a caused a new wave of displacement from rebel-held Khan Sheikhoun town, which sits on the highway linking Aleppo and Damascus and is less than 15 kilometers to the east of Kafr Nbouda.
Khan Sheikhoun has come under increasing fire after Kafr Nbouda was captured, Mustafa said.
The latest wave of violence, which began April 30, has raised fears the government may launch a wider offensive to retake the area, home to around 3 million people. Already, over 150,000 have been displaced within the enclave, according to the U.N., mostly civilians escaping front lines.“They entered Kafr Nbouda but the clashes continue with government forces at the edge,” Mustafa said.