Moscow accused Ankara of violating agreements on Idlib
The Russian Defense Ministry said Wednesday that fortified rebel positions in Syria’s Idlib province have merged with Turkish army observation posts, and artillery attacks on neighboring civilian areas and a Russian airbase in Syria have become daily..
These accusations, made by Major General Igor Konashenkov, are likely to heighten tensions ahead of a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday in Moscow..
Konashenkov accused Turkey of failing to fulfill its obligations under the agreement with Moscow on Idlib. Instead, he said, Ankara is helping anti-Assad rebel forces..
According to him, Turkey introduced a grouping into Idlib, comparable in size to a mechanized division, in violation of international law..
There has been no reaction from Turkey yet. Ankara and Moscow blame each other for escalating violence in Idlib.
Russia announced the merger of the positions of the rebels with the posts of Turkey in Idlib.
Bradley Bowman: rapprochement with Russia is not in Turkey’s interests
Director of the Center for Political-Military Studies, Washington Foundation for the Defense of Democracy Bradley Bowman (Bradley Bowman, Foundation for Defense of Democracies) emphasizes that the situation in Syria remains volatile and it is quite difficult to predict the results of the talks between Putin and Erdogan, which are to take place on Thursday, March 5, in Moscow: the main goal of Moscow, as the expert notes, the support of Bashar al-Assad remains, and for the President of Turkey – an end to the escalation, in order, in particular, to reduce the number of refugees heading from Syria to Turkey.
Bradley Bowman also emphasizes that by choosing a policy of rapprochement with Moscow and acquiring Russian S-400 air defense systems – despite the confrontation between the United States and its NATO allies, of which Turkey is a member – Erdogan put himself in a difficult situation..
“Turkey is a NATO ally, which, however, does not act as an ally, acquiring an air and missile defense system from Moscow, the main threat to the alliance,” the expert said, adding that Erdogan’s call for a no-fly zone in Syria clearly demonstrates the complexity of the situation that has arisen. “There may be a situation where Turkey will use the Russian air defense system in the future to try to shoot down a Russian plane.”.
The expert also notes that for the United States, the possibility of providing Turkey with the American Patriot missile defense systems, which Erdogan may request, causes disagreements among the administration. The United States opposes the Russian and NATO systems to be located in one country and, as the expert notes, if the United States decides to provide the Patriot system to Turkey, the latter will have to abandon the Russian S-400 systems..
“This is just an example of the difficulties and problems that Erdogan imposes on his country, drawing closer to a country whose interests are fundamentally different from those of Turkey. Turkey’s interests must match those of its NATO partners, including the United States, ”says Bradley Bowman, noting that President Erdogan at the political level must admit that his turn towards authoritarianism and rapprochement with Russia is not in the country’s interests..
Syria Conflict: Turkey and Russia announce Idlib ceasefire – BBC News
Journalist «Voices of America». Prior to that, she worked for international non-governmental organizations in Washington DC and London, in the Russian-language version of the Estonian daily newspaper “Postimees” and as a spokesman for the Estonian Interior Ministry. Interests – international relations, politics, economics