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    A picture taken on February 28, 2018 shows flames erupting in the horizon following a reported rocket attack in al-Shaffuniyah, in the enclave of Eastern Ghouta on the outskirts of the Syrian capital Damascus

    Syrian Government is Winning the War in Ghouta and Afrin – Analyst

    © AFP 2018 / Ammar SULEIMAN
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    The Syrian army will eventually prevail over the terrorists in Eastern Ghouta and will force them to retreat, a Damascus-based political analyst Turki al Hasan has told Sputnik.

    What really matters now, he added, is whether they will lay down their arms or move to other parts of the country, like they did earlier in Aleppo.

    “When the militants realize they can no longer stand up to the Syrian armed forces, they will certainly start looking for a settlement,” the expert said.

    Turki al Hasan believes that Syria is facing a three-pronged attack by the US, Israel and Western countries, by their regional allies, Turkey, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Jordan and  terrorist groups paving the way for them on the ground.

    He added that after the Syrian army and its allies had managed to minimize the role played by Daesh and regional powers in Syria, the Americans were forced to join in the fray and engage the Syrian Armed Forces themselves.

    As for the situation in Afrin, Turki al Hasan said the chances for an early turnaround there remaining slim, the US is taking its time ramping up tensions, diverting government forces and otherwise undermining the Syrian government. 

    He pins high hopes on the popular militia helping establish constructive cooperation between the government and the Kurds.

    “The Syrian Government is rendering every possible assistance to the defenders of Afrin, which is considers its own territory,” the expert continued, adding that the Turkish invasion was viewed by Damascus as an act of aggression against the country’s territorial integrity.
    Turkey, meanwhile, has been bogged down in its ongoing military campaign in Afrin failing to achieve its declared goals.

    “Even the latest meeting between [Turkish President] Recep Tayyip Erdogan and [US Secretary of State] Rex Tillerson produced no tangible results as the situation now favors the Syrian Government,” Turki al Hasan concluded.

    On Thursday, Syrian government forces fought back three attacks by militants during a humanitarian pause in Eastern Ghouta.

    “During the pause, militants from illegal armed groups attempted to attack the humanitarian corridor of Muhayam-al-Wafedin three times from Eastern Ghouta … All the attacks were successfully repelled by government forces,” spokesman for the Russian center for Syrian reconciliation Maj. Gen. Vladimir Zolotukhin said Thursday.

    READ MORE: Russian Military: Syrian Army Repels 3 Attacks on E Ghouta Humanitarian Corridor

    Eastern Ghouta, a rebel-held suburb of Damascus, occupies an area of about a hundred square kilometers with the pre-war population reaching 400,000 people.

    The area, which is currently encircled by the SAA, was seized by the so-called Syrian opposition and radicals in 2012.

    The views expressed in this article are solely those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.

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    three-pronged attack, Eastern Ghouta, army advance, analyst, Daesh, Syrian Armed Forces, Turki al Hasan, Syria
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