(Zaman Al Wasl)- Perhaps 2016 is the ultimate year of forced displacement. And how can it be considered otherwise when it was witness to the largest operation of forced displacement undertaken against the residents of Aleppo, the economic and industrial capital of Syria, following a Russian-Iranian deal and Turkish blessing.
The chapter on the forced displacement of Aleppo’s original residents began long before the city was besieged. Zaman al-Wasl forecasted the danger ahead in a report published in early 2016 entitled, “The Domino Siege Threatens Alepp. Russian Airplanes draw a New Map on The Burnt Land.” In the report, our correspondent in Aleppo presented information provided by a military source in the Syrian resistance which revealed for the first time that one of the “friendly” countries- he was referring to Turkey- informed the factions in Aleppo’s countryside that the regime forces and militias will launch a military campaign against Aleppo’s northern countryside from the Bashkui town axis, and the regime forces will advance towards Nubl and al-Zahraa with the aim of lifting the siege on those towns and cutting off the road between Aleppo’s northern countryside and the city in the beginning of February 2016.
The same source indicated at the time that the “friendly country” confirmed to the factions that the Russian forces pledged to support the regime forces with 1500 aerial strikes. The air strikes were sufficient to open the way before the regime forces and auxiliary foreign militias to advance towards the towns of Nubl and al-Zahraa in Aleppo’s northern countryside and break the siege on the two towns.
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