Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on January 21 that the Turkish army actually began a ground operation in Syria Afrin. Earlier the Turkish General staff announced the beginning of “operation Olive branch” against the forces of the Kurds in this region of Syria. The operation began on Saturday at 17.00 Moscow time. According to the General staff, it was attended by 72 plane was struck by 108 of 113 goals.
The venue of the next operation, according to the President of Turkey, will be the Syrian region Manbij. Earlier, Erdogan has repeatedly said that Afrin should be clear from the self-defense forces of Syrian Kurds (YPG), which Turkey considers a terrorist organization, associated with the outlawed Turkey Kurdistan workers ‘ party.
It is reported that on 21 January from the Turkish air force strikes killed six civilians and three Kurdish militiamen and 13 civilians were wounded.
On Sunday, Turkish tanks entered Syrian Afrin and supported the opposition Free Syrian army in operations against Kurdish groups. Turkish armored vehicles are not faced with serious resistance self-defense forces of Kurds, who are moving away from the border inside Syrian territory.
The operation of the Turkish armed forces “Olive branch” against Kurdish groups in Northern Syria will be conducted in four phases, said Prime Minister of Turkey Binali Yildirim. “The operation will be conducted in four phases, will create a 30-kilometer security zone” — quoted by TASS, the Turkish Prime Minister.
According to him, Russia has no objection to the operation in ‘ Afrīn. “We are working to resolve the concerns of Iran and Russia has objections on this topic,” said Binali Yildirim. He noted that “Ankara is in contact with Damascus through the mediation of Moscow and Tehran.”
Also, Mr. Yildirim said that anyone who would provide military support to the Kurdish forces in the Syrian Afrin, will be the aim of the Turkish operation.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has said that the attack of Turkey on the Afrin connected with the policy of Ankara, which, according to him, based on the support of terrorist groups.
He stressed that Turkey’s position is well known, as it is from the beginning of the crisis in Syria began to cooperate with various extremist groups.
Such a statement, as reported by news Agency SANA, Assad made during a meeting with a delegation of the Iranian Strategic Council on foreign relations.
In turn, representatives of the YPG has accused Russia of approval of the Turkish military operation. This was reported by Iraqi Kurdistan Rudaw.
“We know that the Turkish military forces would not have attacked Afrin, without the approval of the international community, especially Russia, which had deployed its troops in the region”, — reads the statement of the command of self-defense of the Syrian Kurds.
According to the YPG, Russia has redeployed its troops from Afrin in another area of Syria, at the same time, expressing concern at the escalation of the conflict.
The representative of the Syrian Kurdistan in Moscow Rodi Osman urged Russia to stop military operation of Turkey against the Syrian Kurds, he reported this to RIA Novosti.
As noted by Othman, the support of Turkish military operations and the occupation by Turkish troops Afrin is endangering the lives around a million people. According to him, the population is threatened by mass murder by the military of Turkey.
The defense Ministry said that relocated from the region of the operative group of the Center for reconciliation of the warring parties and military police for security reasons. The defense Ministry believe that the situation has led the provocative actions of the United States, which supplied arms to Pro-American factions.
— I believe that Russia is acting rightly, not by intervening in the conflict between Turkey and Kurds, says a leading expert of the Center for military-political research of the MGIMO Mikhail Alexandrov. Since the Kurds have lately behaved very aggressively. They ceased to reckon with our interests and the interests of the leadership of Syria, becoming, in fact, a puppet of the United States. They carry out instructions overseas curators, passed through the territory under their control Islamic terrorists that they could strike at the government units of the Syrian army. Moreover, in the Kurdish territory are the camps where American instructors are training new militants for attacks on the Syrian Arab army (RAA). In General, the Kurds refuse to complete the negotiations on the Syrian settlement. Do not want to withdraw its armed units from those areas where they never lived. In the same Raqqa they don’t want to miss the troops of the army of Bashar al-Assad.
It turns out that they play on the US side not only against Assad but also against Russian interests in the middle East. We have no reason to protect them. Do the Turks themselves would not have dared to carry out the operation against Kurds in Syrian territory. They agreed their actions with Russia and Iran. And we had no reason to argue with Ankara. Once the Americans took over the function rounds the Kurds, let the Kurds and turn to them for help. Let the Americans protect them from Turkish shells and rockets. Moreover, the Americans said something, hinted at some kind of military assistance to the Kurds apinski. So far, the Kurds have declared that they are friends of Russia, but at the same time not giving a shit.
“SP”: — logically, in Syria with intractable Kurds had to deal with the Syrian army or the police, not Turkish…
— Bashar al-Assad is not strong enough to act at once on all fronts. Assad, with the support of the Russian space forces conducting operation against Islamists in Idlib. By the way, the Turks are silent about this operation, do not Express dissatisfaction. What is also revealing. We washed hands in relation to the actions of Turkey in Afrin and they said nothing about Idlib.
As for Afrin, Russia in the strategic plan there is no difference whether to control the Pro-American Kurds or Turks. Our task is to help Assad to take control of as much of Syrian territory. Still have remnants of the terrorist enclaves, which control the Pro-American groups. How many have the strength of the Syrian army, it is necessary to clean up these enclaves. And then to negotiate a peace settlement.
“SP”: — That is, even with the help of Russia Assad not able to establish control over the entire territory of pre-war Syria?
— Over time, this can happen. Assad’s army is small. Russia is helping mainly with air strikes, and sometimes the bomb squad. To attack on several fronts ATS just can’t. The Iranians are helping Assad’s forces, but is also very limited.
“SP”: — trump is famous, to put it mildly “extravagant” statements and decisions like the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. And if Americans were suddenly to recognize an independent Syrian Kurdistan?
— I think that the Americans will act in their usual way — vague pledge its support, pitting the warring parties. And then of these promises to give. The classic example is the war in South Ossetia in 2008. The Americans then hinted Saakashvili for support, although really just wanted to see how Russia will behave in a given situation. Until we see that trump does not dare to admit even Iraqi Kurdistan, where, apparently, held a referendum, and, if desired, the Americans might “cover”. But the United States, although they are best Pro-American formally independent Kurdistan, you know that if you go too far in supporting the Kurds, it is possible to plunge into military action. But that the Americans don’t like to do, prefer to fight by proxy. Moreover, supporting the Kurds, there is a risk definitively to quarrel with the Turks. And it is for the United States would mean a loss of influence in the region. And not the fact that the war with the Turks defeated the Americans. Since Moscow has already promised to sell Ankara a modern air defense system, and in case of war, but this deal was made very quickly. And from Iraq, Americans can “ask” to leave if they too obviously were on the side of the Kurds, especially the Iraqi.
— Russia has no developed strategy of action in Syria and generally in the middle East, says a political scientist and blogger Anatoly El Murid. We act on the basis of momentary current situation. By and large, if you leave all the sentiments and proceed from a cynical geopolitical pragmatism, we would not mind that Turkey is mired in a war with the Kurds. In this case, Ankara would be more compliant with the Kremlin, for example, on “Turkish stream.” As I understand it, the Turks stubbornly refuse to accept Gazprom’s proposal to pave four sections of the pipeline (one thread for Turkey, three for transit to Europe). The Turks would be limited to two threads — one for their domestic consumption, the other for transit. In this embodiment, the profitability of the “Turkish stream” is small and generally dubious.
Iran is also not opposed to the Turks bogged down in the war with the Kurds. That is why special objections against the operation in ‘ afrīn do not Express nor Iran, nor Russia.
“SP”: — meanwhile, we are talking about the violation of Syrian sovereignty by Turkey…
— Now difficult to say to what extent the sovereignty of Syria. The Turks in the border areas inhabited by Kurds, their interests. In fact, they want to on the formal territory of Syria was not established a support base for the already Turkish Kurds. Since the positions of the Kurdistan workers party in Turkey is quite strong.
“SP”: — Actually, the US has added fuel to the fire when he declared that is ready to supply Kurds with modern weapons…
— The US has its own interests. They are such a kind referees for whom it is important that none of the participants of the middle East conflict has not achieved its goals. To have lost everything. As for apinski Kurds, as far as I know, it never was supported.