This Video Does Not Show Turkish Troops Targeting Assad Regime Positions
Thursday 20th February 2020
Social media users and news pages have circulated today footage of several military vehicles carrying launchers launching missiles from behind earthen berms.
The video went viral as news surfaced that Turkey has begun a military operation against the Assad regime forces in rural Idlib.
Tweeter @hasandeeroo posted the video, claiming that it shows the Turkish army hitting regime targets without providing further information. Also, tweeter @TNTreports has claimed the footage shows “Turkish troops targeting Assad regime positions near al-Nairay, east of Idlib.”
A reverse search found that it was circulated on social media around 2 years ago. Turkish news channels and websites reported that it shows Turkish troops targeting positions of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) in the northern countryside of Aleppo.
Haberler, a Turkish news website, published the video on 21 Jan., 2018 in a report titled, “Moment of Hitting Targets in Afrin with Operation Olive Branch Hatay.” In addition, we found the video published on Milliyet, a Turkish newspaper, under the title, “Moment of Hitting Targets in Afrin”
Because the video is posted in poor quality, our team could not determine where it was taken. However, the fact the it was posted around two years ago refutes its relation with any current military operation in northern Syria.
In the past few days Ankara has sent additional troops to launch a forthcoming military operation against the Assad forces, as Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addressed the Turkish parliament saying that the deadline he had set for the Syrian regime is “drawing to a close,” threatening the Assad regime for the last time to stop its offensive in Idlib and to withdraw back to the Sochi borders.