Who is leading the fight in Mosul?

Revue
 
MENA Roundup is a weekly publication containing insightful articles on politics in the Middle East, f
 
October 19 · Issue #11 · View online
MENAroundup
MENA Roundup is a weekly publication containing insightful articles on politics in the Middle East, focussing on Syria and Iraq. lars@menaroundup.com

Key developments
  • The renewed talks on Syria in Lausanne between Russia, the United States, Iran, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan came to nothing, so far. However, it cannot be ruled out that the groundbreaking advances are kept secret, of course (…). 
  • Rebels in Qudsaya and al-Hameh, near Damascus, surrendered to the Syrian military after months of siege. The fighters and most of the residents will leave to Idlib province. Such agreements indicate the proceeding de facto partition of Syria.
  • The Free Syrian Army, backed by Turkey, advanced in northern Syria and captured the symbolically important town of Dabiq.
  • Turkish President Erdoğan and his Russian counterpart met to discuss the situation in Syria. Putin said that they agreed on various issues, especially the need to deliver humanitarian aid to besieged Aleppo. They also signed an agreement for the TurkStream gas pipeline that was suspended amid tensions between the two countries. 
  • Jund al-Aqsa and Ahrar al-Sham reached an agreement in order to contain the conflict that weakened rebel positions in northern Syria. According to the agreement, Jund al-Aqsa (JAQ) has dissolved and completely merged with Jabhat Fatah al-Sham (JFS), former Nusra. Infighting might have come to an end for the moment, but the tension between Ahrar al-Sham and JAQ and especially JFS remains high.
  • The offensive on Mosul, the Islamic State’s center in Iraq, started on Monday. Click here to read about the first results.
Articles worth reading
The battle for Mosul is a struggle for Iraq itself
Political and Military Situation in Kurdistan
Constructively Ambiguous
What is Turkey trying to achieve in Iraq?
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