A year ago Turkey and Russia have entered into an agreement to establish a demilitarized zone in Idlib province, an area considered to be the last bastion of the Syrian opposition. Under the agreement, Ankara and Moscow should seek from their allies (rebels and Bashar al Assad) the withdrawal of heavy weapons, restoring peaceful life, and starting a political process. But the international community has witnessed massacres in the countryside. So, what was the reason for this?
According to the UN Report on the Independent International Commission in Syria issued on January 31, 2019, Turkish-backed National Front for Liberation militants and Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham refused to leave front lines from the very beginning, sabotaged rehabilitation of local authorities and negotiations with Bashar al Assad. The report also confirms the regime fulfilled its obligations by withdrawing more than a thousand soldiers and a hundred pieces of heavy weapons from the demilitarized zone. Paulo Pinheiro, Chairman of the Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic, on September, 11 blamed Ankara-backed radicals for war crimes and indiscriminate shelling of civilian infrastructure and residential neighborhoods.
Sabotage of peace agreements by Turkey has led not only to deterioration of the humanitarian situation in Idlib, but to the total domination of radical forces in the region.
The increasing power of Turkish-backed extremists in Northern Syria completely discredited initiatives of the moderate democratic opposition. The mass purges, arrests, and torture of liberal activists by the Islamists actually cleaned up the local political field, depriving Syria of hope for democratic transformation.
Thus, actions of the Turkish leader have undermined efforts of the international community and Geneva talks on the establishment of a political dialogue.
Ankara preferred to betray democratic values and single-handedly implemented its plan to strengthen its positions in the region. It does not
shy to use any means in its endeavor. Turkey even blackmails the EU threatening to open migration gateways and, thereby, exacerbate the migration crisis in Europe.
Turkish authorities have never hidden the fact that they consider the Syrian conflict exclusively in the context of resolving the “Kurdish issue”. Ankara’s racist plan implies the complete erasing of Kurdish identity not only in Turkey, but in Syria too.
The Turkey’s Euphrates shield and the Olive branch military operations were conducted in the territory historically inhabited by the Kurds and actually eliminated their self-governance. After gaining control of the cantons, the Turks launched ethnic cleansing and arrests of Kurdish political activists. The initiative to establish a so-called safe zone in Northern Syria is actually aimed at achieving the same goals.
Moreover, Turkish government disburden itself by pursuing an inhuman policy in Syria’s North which is aimed at deportation of Syrian refugees to ruined Idlib province. An Ottoman line regarding refugees witnesses that Ankara is planning to turn Syria’s North into giant concentration camp for people who are not welcomed neither in Turkey nor in Syria.
Thus, the Turks continue to implement their genocide policy oriented towards Syrian refugees and the Kurds. It will result in distancing from the West and betraying the basis of human rights which excludes the possibility of democratic changes in Syria.
Nonetheless, Turkey was a shining example of advanced Western Asia state opened for democratic transitions and progress of social institutes. However, Turkish tyrant regime does its best to drive its country back to past and to prevent the Turks’ flourishing.