Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs accuses Ankara of delaying in implementing its obligations in regards to the Idlib agreement, while Erdogan is running out of political solutions and Davutoglu takes every opportunity to attack him.
On Wednesday, September 16, a Russian military delegation arrived in Ankara to discuss the recent developments on the ground in Idlib, northwestern Syria, and the coordination between the two countries after the Turkish forces conducted a unilateral patrol on the “Aleppo-Lattakia” international road ‘M4’ on Tuesday 15 September for the first time since the last attack on the joint patrols on August 25.
The meeting discussed the file of joint patrols and the guarantees to secure the international road to prevent any future attacks similar to what happened recently, in addition to discussing the results of joint military maneuvers between the forces of the two countries in Idlib, and the possibility of starting joint action against the terrorist organizations that are targeting the patrols.
Knowing that on July 14, a car bomb targeted a joint Turkish-Russian patrol on the M4, which led to the injury of three Russian soldiers. A group calls itself the “Chechen Khattab Brigades” claimed responsibility for the attack. On August 17, it targeted another joint patrol with an “RPG” shell, which was the first patrol to go in the opposite direction of the previous patrols (from the village of Ain Hor in Idlib southwestern countryside to the village of Al-Tarnbah (Tronba) in Idlib eastern countryside).
The so-called “Supporters of Abi Bakr Al-Siddiq Brigade”, another variation of al Qaeda in Idlib, targeted Turkish headquarters for the first time, on August 27, in the village of “Sallat Al-Zohour,” with a booby-trapped car driven by a suicide bomber “Abu Suleiman Al-Ansari”, killing and wounding Turkish soldiers, then on September 6, it attacked Turkish soldiers in the town of Mu`tarm, near Jericho (Ariha), south of Idlib, which led to the death of a soldier and the wounding of another. On September 14, it claimed responsibility for the targeting of a Turkish Red Crescent vehicle in the countryside of Aleppo, which led to the death of one of its members and the injury of another.
Whereas the Russian side demands that the Turks abide by their pledges of the “Moscow” agreement regarding removing militants from both sides of the international road (M4) and securing it in preparation for opening it to the movement of travelers as stipulated in the agreement, the Russian Foreign Ministry affirmed that the Turkish regime is delaying the implementation of its obligations in Idlib governorate, and added that the “SDF militia” Backed by the United States, is engaging in dangerous games with the Americans in looting the oil wealth in the Syrian Al-Jazeera (Eastern Euphrates).
“Ankara’s implementation of its obligations stipulated in the Russian-Turkish memorandum concluded on the 5 of March of this year is being delayed,” ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in a press conference on Thursday, September 17th in Moscow.
Zakharova indicated that the operations aimed at eliminating the remaining ISIS terrorists in the Syrian Al-Jazeera and other areas will continue, pointing out that the terrorists are deployed in a 55-kilometer outpost surrounding the Al-Tanf base illegally established by the American occupation in the southeastern desert of Syria, as well as the area that includes the oil wells on the Syrian Al-Jazeera in the northeastern regions of the country.
According to Turkish media sources, former Turkish Prime Minister and leader of the “Turkish Future Party” Ahmet Davutoglu attacked Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan by saying: “Erdogan has made us, the Turks, remain alone in facing the crises of the Eastern Mediterranean so that no one supports us except Azerbaijan, and this only indicates to the flaws in the Foreign Ministry’s diplomacy.”
Davutoglu added, “Consultations must begin with Egypt in order to reach an agreement to demarcate the maritime borders between the two countries in the Mediterranean,” stressing that “communication with Egypt should not be cut off under the current circumstances at all, and the improvement of relations with both Syria and Egypt should be accelerated, and the necessary agreements should be concluded with these two countries in the eastern Mediterranean in order to achieve regional stability.”
In previous statements, Davutoglu accused Erdogan and his ‘Justice and Development’ party (AKP) of working to make Turkey “a dwarf state by spreading a state of fear among the people and turning the ruling authority into a propaganda company, which really leads to form tragic images, because countries should be managed with seriousness and not propaganda campaigns. ”
The policies of Erdogan and his government have brought his country into many regional conflicts because of his interference in the affairs of other countries, planting tensions, and supporting radical groups in these countries to serve his personal interests. However, this policy has made Turkey subject to much international criticism and condemnation, placing it before the international community as the first party responsible for supporting terrorist organizations and forming militias. With Erdogan’s evasion of political solutions in addition to the fact that Russia and Syria are running out of patience, the prospects for a military operation to regain control on Aleppo – Lattakia international road are getting closer than ever, especially as the current field factors indicate to increased preparations from all sides.
But will the Syrian Arab Army settle for the international road, or will it cross it and advance further to liberate Idlib? And would Erdogan’s recent reinforcements save him from another humiliation after the last one on 3rd of March this year?