The situation in Syria and around

Syria must be free of foreign military presence, Russia should also leave if Damascus no longer needs its help – Putin

12 Oct, 2019
The territorial integrity of Syria must be fully restored and all foreign forces should withdraw, including Russia if Damascus decides it doesn’t need Moscow’s help anymore, according to President Vladimir Putin.
“All the forces deployed illegitimately inside any sovereign state – in this case Syria – must leave,” Putin said in a joint interview with RT Arabic, UAE-based Sky News Arabia, and Saudi Arabia’s Al-Arabiya broadcasters.
“This is true for everyone. If Syria’s new legitimate government chooses to say that they have no more need for Russia’s military presence, this will be just as true for Russia.”

In Pictures: Civilians flee Turkey-Syria border

International Committee of the Red Cross warns tens of thousands targeted in Turkey’s offensive are at ‘great risk’.
Oct.10, 2019
Turkey says its forces have seized designated targets on the second day of an offensive against Kurdish fighters in Syria after a withdrawal by US forces opened up a dangerous new phase in the region’s eight-year-old conflict.
Turkish special forces advanced into northeastern Syria to the east of the Euphrates river, the country’s defence ministry said on Thursday.
Residents were fleeing Tal Abyad and some of them told dpa news agency that civilians who were still inside the city were prevented from leaving by Kurdish fighters.

Bloodied clothes and body bags: Kurds mourn dead in Syria

Martin Chulov reports from north-east Syria on the deadliest day yet of the Turkish offensive
11 Oct., 2019
n a wooden hut at the back of a hospital, a woman cradled the head of a dead man and dabbed away grime and blood with a sponge. A blanket covered the man’s mutilated lower half. His blood-soaked military fatigues were still wrapped around his chest.
On a table behind, another body lay zipped into a large blue bag – a young woman this time, also dressed in green and wearing the patches of Kurdish forces. The medical worker straightened her head and gently swept the dead woman’s hair from her face. “We have five martyrs now,” she said, pointing across the makeshift morgue. “Three military and two civilians. The fighters were trying to rescue the others.”

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Erdoğan has managed the unthinkable: uniting all the other Middle East rivals

12 Oct. 2019
By invading northern Syria last week, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan achieved what many thought impossible – uniting all the regional countries and rival powers with a stake in the country in furious opposition to what they see as a reckless, destabilising move.
A truculent nationalist-populist with dictatorial tendencies, Erdoğan has often cast himself as one man against the world during 16 consecutive years as Turkey’s prime minister and president. Now he really is on his own.

Turkey in clampdown of critics of ‘Operation Spring of Peace’ Syria campaign

10 October, 2019
Turkish police arrested over 20 people on charges of “terrorist propaganda” on Thursday for criticising Ankara’s offensive against Kurdish forces in Syria.
Among those arrested was journalist Hakan Demir, the head of Birgun, an opposition news outlet.
He was detained for “inciting the people to hatred and enmity” after it reported there had been civilian casualties in the offensive, which was launched by Turkish and Syrian forces on Wednesday.

Turkey Attacks US Special Forces in Syria, Apparently by Mistake

Oct.11, 2019
A contingent of U.S. Special Forces was caught up in Turkish shelling against U.S.-backed Kurdish positions in northern Syria, days after President Donald Trump told his Turkish counterpart he would withdraw U.S. troops from certain positions in the area. A senior Pentagon official said shelling by the Turkish forces was so heavy that the U.S. personnel considered firing back in self-defense.
Newsweek has learned through both an Iraqi Kurdish intelligence official and the senior Pentagon official that Special Forces operating on Mashtenour hill in the majority-Kurdish city of Kobani fell under artillery fire from Turkish forces conducting their so-called “Operation Peace Spring” against Kurdish fighters backed by the U.S. but considered terrorist organizations by Turkey. No injuries have been reported.

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Mainstream Media Suddenly Care About Syrian Civilian Casualties

United States military has killed more foreign civilians than any other armed force on the planet since dropping two nuclear bombs on Japan in 1945.
By Brett Wilkins
October 11, 2019
Turn on any US cable news network or click on any mainstream media news story about the Turkish offensive in Syria and you”ll see lots of worrying about civilian casualties. On the first day of the Turkish campaign, all the major networks covered the mass exodus of Kurds facing imminent bombing and invasion, with most also airing the first reports of Kurdish civilian casualties. Everywhere we see expressions of concern for the innocent Kurds caught in the path of Turkey”s onslaught.