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    Smoke rises from buildings in the area of Tal Sharba following government air strikes on the outskirts of the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on December 27, 2015, as government forces seized the area from Islamic State (IS) group jihadists

    Jordan Establishes Joint War Room With Russia to Combat Daesh

    © AFP 2017/ GEORGE OURFALIAN
    Middle East
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    Jordan has set up a joint war room with Russia to carry out coordinated anti-Daesh (ISIL) military operations in Syria, indicating a turn by the country from its US, Saudi Arabia and Israeli allies, in the face of the increasing volatility of the entire Middle East region.

    The move by Jordanian King Abdullah II to establish a shared war room with Russian forces will radically change how political decisions are made and how intelligence is shared in the region, Israeli military and intelligence sources told military intelligence commentary website Debka.

    Previously, Jordan fought the Syrian President Bashar Assad from a command center shared with the US, Saudi Arabia and Israel, located north of the country’s capital of Amman.

    Although Jordanian authorities present the new cooperation with Russia as a simple logistical move to coordinate all parties involved in combating Daesh, major military and intelligence efforts will be directed to the new center, military sources claimed.

    According to Debka, citing anonymous sources in Washington and Moscow, the new war room was set up shortly after the presidents of Russia and the US held phone talks on the issue on January 13.

    Jordan will stop providing so-called “moderate” Syrian rebels with their main pipeline, experts noted, adding that opposition groups will also be deprived of funding and other types of assistance from the US, Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

    This news may also upset Israel, in light of its long support for the rebels, who had seized large parts in the south of the war-torn country. To the potential discontent of the Israelis, the establishment of the new command center will likely enable the legitimate Syrian army to defeat the rebels in the country.

    Since the launch of the Russian air operation in Syria last September, Syrian government forces have recaptured large areas previously lost to various militant groups.

    Last week the Syrian army regained control of Salma, a town in the coastal Latakia province considered to be a major rebel stronghold since 2012. Troops also advanced in the south of central Hama province and east in Homs, and are currently on the offensive in the southern Daraa province.

    “The situation has stabilized, the [Syrian] government is no longer threatened with collapse,” the Jordan Times reported citing Vasily Kashin, an expert for Centre for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies.

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    Tags:
    Syrian army, Syrian conflict, Daesh, Bashar al-Assad, Israel, Syria, United States, Russia, Jordan
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