MESOP CEASEFIRE-WATCH – Syrian Offensive in Latakia Continues Despite Ceasefire

 Syrian government troops are continuing an assault on rebel positions in Latakia Province today, despite the internationally-brokered ceasefire remaining in effect. In particular, Assad regime forces are trying to seize Kabani Hill, a strategic position overlooking the rebel-held city of Jisr al-Shughour. Jabhat al-Nusra, which is not a party to the ceasefire, is present in the area, but so are more moderate rebel groups. “The regime and militias are trying to storm (the hill) under very fierce Russian air cover and artillery fire,” a Free Syrian Army spokesman spokesman told Reuters. Another rebel commander said that the ceasefire was never felt on some frontlines. “Battles continue in vital areas that the regime wants, and where there was no truce in the first place. There is bombardment and battles…We are in the fifth day and there is no change in these areas.” Read more