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Turkey: continues extending its observer mission in Idlib

A place to talk about domestic politics in Middle East (Iran, Iraq , Turkey, Syria) Also includes topics about Assyrian, Armenian, Chaldean .

Turkey: continues extending its observer mission in Idlib

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Oct 10, 2017 8:49 pm

Turkey makes deal with Nusra Front to control south of Afrin

As Turkey makes preparations for a military operation against al Qaeda-linked militants in Syria’s Idlib province, reports indicate Turkish forces are conducting surveillance in areas overlooking the Kurdish canton of Afrin, making a deal to assume control in the area.

Multiple reports stated that Turkish forces, escorted by members of Tahrir al-Sham, formerly known as al-Nusra Front with ties to al Qaeda, entered Idlib province on Sunday from Turkey’s Hatay province and approached the Idlib-Afrin border.

There, they made a deal for the Turkish forces to take control over areas in Idlib province that border the Kurdish YPG-controlled Afrin, according to a report from the UK-based conflict monitor Syrian Observatory for Human Rights on Monday.

The Observatory said the Turkish “reconnaissance forces” traveled through Idlib province and into western Aleppo while being “protected” by Tahrir al-Sham.

Several other reports confirmed the Turkish forces were seen coordinating with Tahrir al-Sham near Afrin.

The Turkish forces came within kilometres of Afrin in the Darat al-Ezzah area where they deployed four vehicles, AP reported on Sunday, citing a local Kurdish source.

Another local source told Reuters on Sunday they had seen Turkish military vehicles traveling in Idlib with a Tahrir al-Sham escort, sending a reconnaissance team to areas that overlooked Afrin and Aleppo.

The same source, a senior Syrian rebel, told Reuters mortars were fired towards the Turkish reconnaissance team from areas under YPG control.

The Turkish military confirmed on Monday that it had begun reconnaissance activity in Idlib in preparation for an offensive, the first step towards establishing a de-escalation zone in the province as per an agreement reached by Turkey, Russia, and Iran in the Astana peace talks.

Turkey will be backing elements of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) in the offensive.

According to state-run Anadolu Agency, blocking Kurdish expansion in the area is also a goal of the operation. Ankara considers the Syrian Kurdish armed group YPG and its political wing the PYD as extensions of the PKK, a named terror group.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday that they would not allow the Kurds to establish a “terror corridor,” linking its territories in eastern Syria to the Mediterranean Sea.

Afrin is the western-most Kurdish-controlled territory in northern Syria, commonly known as Rojava. It is physically separated from the eastern territories, however.

If Turkey succeeds in exerting control in Idlib, Afrin will be nearly completely surrounded by Turkey and its allied FSA. To its southeast, Afrin also borders Damascus-controlled Aleppo province.

http://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/syria/091020171
Last edited by Anthea on Wed Nov 29, 2017 12:00 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Turkey: continues extending its observer mission in Idlib

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Re: Turkey makes deal with Nusra Front to control south of A

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Oct 10, 2017 9:07 pm

Tahrir al-Sham (formerly known as al-Nusra Front) are worse than ISIS

We all knew that Turkey supported ISIS but for them to unite with al-Nusra is far FAR worse

It is believed that if and when ISIS are defeated, most of it's remaining supporters would join with al-Nusra

The main difference between al-Nusra and ISIS being al-Nusra's ability to work with other dangerous radical Islamic groups

In working with al-Nusra Turkey has shown itself to be a dangerous radical Islamic country - this does not bode well for anyone especially Kurds :shock:

http://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/syria/091020171
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Re: Turkey makes deal with Nusra Front to control south of A

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Nov 17, 2017 3:51 pm

Erdogan threatens to ‘cleanse’ Afrin of YPG

Turkey’s president has once again threatened military action against Kurdish forces in northern Syria.

“We need to cleanse Afrin of the structure there called the YPG terrorist organization,” Recep Tayyip Erdogan told members of his AK party on Friday.

Afrin is the western-most canton of Rojava, the autonomous Kurdish region in northern Syria under control of the PYD and its armed forces of the YPG. Ankara believes the Kurdish groups are extensions of the PKK, a named terrorist organization. The PYD and YPG follow the doctrine of jailed PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan, but insist they are distinct organizations. :ymdevil:

Turkish forces are currently setting up observation points in Idlib province, on Afrin’s southern border. Six of the planned 12 posts are established, according to state-run Anadolu Agency.

Turkey’s military operations in Idlib are purportedly to establish a safe zone in the province, as agreed by Turkey, Russia, and Iran during the Astana process seeking to bring Syria’s civil war to an end.

The first observation posts, however, are overlooking Afrin. “We need to be dominant at observation points in Idlib. We have to,” said Erdogan. “If not, different terrorist groups will try to invade those areas.”

Turkish forces have repeatedly carried out attacks on the Kurdish forces in Afrin. The YPG publicizes near daily attacks and on Friday stated that the Turks had stepped up their activity, bringing heavy weaponry to the border.

The YPG are receiving US support in the war against ISIS. The Kurdish force is the leading faction within the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), who defeated ISIS in Raqqa and are currently battling the group in Deir ez-Zor province.

Ankara has complained that its NATO ally the United States has backed the Kurdish force and has reported that weapons supplied to the SDF had been used to attack Turkish forces in Turkey, despite US reassurances that the arms would not make their way into PKK hands.

Erdogan said on Friday that he was “greatly disappointed by the United States not keeping its promises.”

Problems that could have been easily solved were ignored and he “doesn’t want the same thing to happen in Afrin.”

“Don’t try to trick us by saying that the SDF is a democratic establishment. It is a terrorist organization,” he declared. “We know who’s who.”

http://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/syria/171120171
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Re: Erdogan once again threatens to ‘cleanse’ Afrin of YPG

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Nov 28, 2017 11:40 pm

Ankara accuses Syrian Kurds of ‘ethnic cleansing’

Turkey said it will continue extending its observer mission in Syria’s Idlib province in order to deter what it described as “ethnic cleansing” by Kurdish groups in northern Syria. At the same time, the YPG reported heavy artillery fire by Turkish forces on villages in Afrin.

“PKK/PYD/YPG terrorist organization’s efforts to carry out covert ethnic cleansing by changing the demographic structure of Syria are against international law and human rights, and, therefore, it is unacceptable,” read a statement issued by the National Security Council after a meeting chaired by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday.

Turkey used a similar accusation of ethnic cleansing when launching its military operation Euphrates Shield in summer 2016, saying that the Kurdish forces were taking control of areas with predominantly Arab populations.

Saying that Turkey must take every measure to ensure its security along its border with Syria, the council said Turkey’s armed forces had been successful in its observer mission in Syria’s Idlib province and “peace and security will literally be achieved when this mission is carried out near western Aleppo and Afrin.”

Turkish Armed Forces completed work on their third observation point in Idlib on November 19.

They will reportedly set up 12 such sites, according to Hurriyet Daily News.

Turkey began its operations in Idlib in October in order to monitor a ceasefire and establish a de-escalation zone under agreements reached in Astana by Turkey, Russia, and Iran.

Turkey is also using the mission to observe the Kurdish canton of Afrin, north of Idlib. Kurdish forces say the Turks have frequently fired at their positions and civilian locations in Afrin.

On Tuesday evening, the YPG announced areas in the countryside of northern Afrin were under heavy artillery fire from Turkish forces, adding “civilians of three villages are in danger because of shelling.”

Last week, Turkey accused the YPG of opening fire on them across the Afrin-Idlib border.

Turkey considers the armed YPG and its political wing the PYD as extensions of the PKK, a named terrorist organization. The Syrian Kurdish groups deny the charge.

The YPG is the dominant force within the US-backed SDF battling ISIS in northern Syria.

http://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/syria/281120172
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