Ankara earlier said that a new military operation in Syria’s north was in the works, but not cast in stone. Turkey lambasted the lack of progress on establishing security in the region exhibited by its Syrian and Russian counterparts.
Russia openly warned Turkey against launching a new military operation in Syria because it could lead to a new round of violence and armed conflict in the region, as well as prompt separatism, the Russian President’s Special Envoy on Syria Alexander Lavrentiev stated.
The special envoy added that there are other ways to end the shelling of Turkish territory from Syrian soil. Lavrentiev assured that the work to end the bombardments without a new Turkish military op will continue.
Lavrentiev stressed that a new Turkish military operation will not end Ankara’s security concerns regarding Syria. This issue can only be solved by allowing Damascus to control the border, the envoy said.
At the same time, Russia maintains contacts with Kurdish forces, controlling eastern parts of Syria. Lavrentiev said that Moscow is attempting to set up a constructive dialogue between them and Damascus, although no agreements have been achieved on this matter so far.
Ankara accuses Kurds of engaging in terrorist activities and organising attacks in Turkey. The Turkish-alleged terrorist activities of Syria’s de facto independent Kurdish region (Rojava) prompted Turkey to launch several military operations within Syria in 2018 and 2019, during which pro-Turkish militants seized control over some of the Syria’s northern territories, but mostly fought the units of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
A ceasefire was reached following Russia’s diplomatic efforts, which resulted in the Sochi memorandum with Turkey. According to the deal, Turkey, Syria and Russian forces deployed in Syria will be jointly patrolling the parts of the Arab Republic’s northern border to ensure Turkey’s security.
Lack of Help From the West
Russian president’s representative on Syria Alexander Lavrentiev lamented a lack of effort by Western countries in terms of helping in the Arab Republic’s restoration following a lengthy internal conflict and terrorist insurgency. He noted that despite numerous statements to the contrary, the Western nations have so far made no steps in helping to restore Syria.
The envoy also shared that there has been no contact between the US and Russia on Syria recently. He clarified that Washington has put these contacts on pause in light of the Russian special military operation in Ukraine.