Idlib is the last stronghold in rebel possession of the Syrian war.
The 90,000 rebels (20,000 of them extremist jihadists – the regime of Assad refuses to differentiate) expected an attack by the Syrian Arab army and its Russian and Iranian allies to begin with, but it was postponed after Russia and Turkey agreed to a demilitarized zone around the province.
Postponed the operative word.
Mike Thomson of Newsnight explains why the battle for Idlib could mean the end of the Syrian war.
Images: Stelios Thoukidides
See more of Newsnight here.