According to statements by Moscow, Russia does not want to lose Turkey - Turkish Expert | Eurasia Diary -

1 October, Thursday

According to statements by Moscow, Russia does not want to lose Turkey - Turkish Expert

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On 3 February, six Turkish soldiers were martyred and seven injured in the armed clashes with the Syrian Army in the de-escalated Idlib zone of Syria. As a result of this accident, the military confrontation between the Turkish army and the Assad forces is more strained.  Turkish army by aircraft and heavy armored vehicles on the ground has launched a strong offensive to Syrian Army targets in retaliation to attacks on Turkish position.  According to the government of Turkey, they will continue such attacks. 

On the occasion of the rise of tension in Syria, Eurasia Dairy took exclusive opinion from Yalchin Sarikaya, who is the coordinator on the foreign policy in the Turkish Academy Political Social and Strategic Research Foundation. Turkish expert touched important issues that what next steps Ankara would do in Syria, as well how the Turkish army’s retaliation to the Syrian army would affect Russian-Turkish relations.

Yalchin Sarikaya first informed that Syria is a critical region for Turkey, as Kurdish terrorist group, PYD, which is considered Syrian PKK, had constantly launched attacks to the borders of Turkey.

“Turkish armed forces have defeated terrorist groups, with conducting three successful military operations- Euphrates Shield, Olive Branch and Peace Spring in the north of Syria,” Sarikaya said.

According to him, there are two reasons why de-escalation zone-Idlib is considered the next region for military operation by the Turkish army. First, there are elements of terrorist militant forces there, including Al-Nusra,  and second, there are one million civil sufferings in this region.

“Turkey has done its responsibility in evacuating the population from the region of Aleppo. However, we do not see that Russia and the United States carry out their responsibilities in Tel-Rifat and Munbich regions,” Sarikaya noted.

“We have to be sure that Turkey has looked through all military options against this attack, According to statements by Moscow. Russia does not want to lose Turkey,” Turkish expert added. 

Yalchin Sarikaya does not think that Turkey’s military response to Assad forces leads Russian-Turkish relations to be aggravated. He said that Ankara has problems in the relations with the United States, and the current situation in the relations of the US-Turkey causing positive developments in Russian-Turkish relations. But, Moscow is interested in the following processes in the relations between Ankara and Washington.  

Sarikaya also added that the Turkish position in the Ukrainian issue and some recent statements by Ankara made Russia angry that led Moscow to send messages to the Erdogan government.  The tension in Syria affirms this.

“Despite some problems emerged between Turkey and Russia, both sides have mutual economic relations. The military confrontation between the Turkish army and Assad forces in Idlib could bring Russian-Turkish war is just remote possibility,” Sarikaya informed.

Furthermore, Sarikaya emphasized that Astana-Sochi talks are necessary for strengthening peace and stability in Syria. It is impossible to decline tension in the region unless there is an understanding among sides. The escalation of the tension will also cause problems for Turkey and Syria.

“Astana-Sochi agreement is still in force. There are patrol posts belong to Turkey in the escalated regions. But, Assad forces have surrounded some Turkish patrol posts and increased tension,” Sarikaya stressed.

Turkey has concerns over the situation that the population in the conflict zone suffering from terrorist groups and the flow of million refugees to the border of Turkey-Yalchin Sarikaya added.

Interviewed by Yunis Abdullayev

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