2018-04-16

Turkish general: "Turkey worries that the final document of the tripartite PYD / PKK meeting is not mentioned"


Military alliance between U.S. and Kurdish-led SDF forces against IS has been a primary factor behind Russian efforts to lure the Kurds into the political dialogue with Assad by promising concessions in the issue of autonomy reserved for the ethnic minority in the predominantly Arab country. Today, extension of cooperation between Washington and Syrian Kurds in matters beyond fight against IS in the eastern Syria not only poses a serious threat to Russian plans and it may as well ultimately lead to confrontation between Russian and Iranian interests in near future.

APA interview with the former head of the Directorate of Intelligence of the General Staff of the Turkish Armed Forces, Colonel-General Ismail Hakky Pekin.

- We want you to comment on the results of the trilateral meeting between Turkey, Russia and Iran held in Ankara on April 4.

- The main message of this summit was sent to Western countries: Turkey, Russia and Iran declared to the West, in particular the United States, that they will cooperate in the issues of the region. Three countries said that they "will not allow the West to develop everything at will". We intend to continue the Astana cooperation. Iran and Russia agreed on some points for the completion of the ringing operation. Western countries have seen that the Syrian problem without President Assad can not be solved. Now after the US, France is trying to intervene in regional processes. At the new stage, the main place on the agenda will be the preparation of the Constitution of Syria. It seems to me that the interests of the US and Turkey will not be seriously discussed in the matter of Manbage. The problem will be solved diplomatically. Until now, we have seen how the interests of large states have collided in parts of Turkey. For example, in Raccoon, the military of the United States and Turkey experienced a serious confrontation. I do not think that in the future such things will take place. Turkey is concerned that the final document of the tripartite meeting of PYD / PKK is not mentioned.

 - How will the problem be solved on the eastern coast of the Euphrates?

  - Western countries, led by the United States, provided the bulk of weapons assistance to a terrorist organization in the region. To solve the PYD / PKK problem on the eastern coast of the Euphrates, Turkey's direct cooperation with Damascus is necessary. We must lose weight from the shoulders: the overwhelming majority of the population there is Arab, the regime of Damascus has a great influence on them. The surest way to solve the problem of the terrorist organization PYD / PKK on the eastern coast of the Euphrates, using the support of local Arab tribes in the region. Kurds make up 4-5% of the population, how can they control about 30% of the Syrian lands? Neither Damascus nor the local Arab tribes will allow this. We also need to cooperate with them. Everyone saw that at this stage no problem in Syria will be solved without Assad, Turkey also has to see it. It's hard to think that everything will be as in the past in Syria, but Turkey must first think about its own interests and not allow the strengthening of the terrorist organization PYD in Syria.

"And the question of Idlib?" In your opinion, did Turkey take on the obligation to Idlib for Russia in connection with the operation in Africa?

- According to the Astana agreement, Idlib was declared "a region where clashes do not occur". Control inside the city is carried out by Turkey, outside of it by Russia. Now it is considered the main region of Syria. Because the terrorists who fled from many regions concentrated in Idlib. Half of the nearly 30 thousand people are Chechens, Russia wants their complete cleansing. Some of the terrorist groups are under the control of Saudi Arabia, the other part - under the control of the British intelligence organization Mİ-6, there are groups that control Turkey. If there is chaos in Idlib, there will be a threat of an influx to Turkey of 2 million people. Therefore, Turkey has to act very cautiously. Today Turkey establishes the 9th control point there. I repeat: Idlib is for Turkey the most vulnerable and problematic region. Russia will not conduct a joint military operation there with Syria, because everything is mixed up. Turkey, first of all, cooperating with Russia, must clear Idlib from terrorists. In this process, Turkish intelligence will be entrusted with many tasks. I must say that we came to a very vulnerable period in the solution of the Syrian problem. Liberation of Idlib from terrorists will add to the 3.5 million refugees to Turkey an additional 2 million people.

Translation of Russian article

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