The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) has deployed reinforcements along the frontlines with Turkish forces in the northern countryside of Aleppo.
The army’s reinforcements were reportedly deployed in several positions between the towns of Tell Rifaat and Manbij, which are both held by Kurdish forces.
On October 16, reports revealed that the reinforcements included T-90 battle tanks, BMP-2 infantry fighting vehicles, BM-21 multiple rocket launchers and 2S1 Gvozdika self-propelled howitzers.
Furthermore, the London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that commando units of the SAA’s elite 4th Division were deployed in Minaq air base, which is located halfway between Tell Rifaat and Manbij.
The SAA’s military buildup in the northern Aleppo countryside came following a Reuters report which revealed that the Turkish military and intelligence are making preparation to take military action against Kurdish forces in Tell Rifaat and other parts of the region.
The Turkish military dropped leaflets over Tell Rifaat in October 16 morning warning the locals of a near operation by its forces. Later on the same day, Russian warplanes dropped leaflets from the SAA over the Turkish-occupied towns of Marea and Azaz warning Turkish-backed militants against launching any attack.
Despite the absence of a political understanding between Damascus and Kurdish forces, which continue to receive support from the US, the SAA will not likely tolerate any Turkish attack on the areas held by these forces in the northern Aleppo countryside. Any Turkish advance in the region will pose a threat to Aleppo city.