Assad’s Russia visit – beginning of a new conflict

Assad’s Russia visit – beginning of a new conflict

Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 21

By Rufiz Hafizoglu - Trend:

Ankara had earlier hoped that a transitional government would be formed in Syria to settle the crisis in that country, and after that President Bashar Assad would hand over all of his powers in six months.

But Assad's visit yesterday to Russia, where he had talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin gives grounds to say that Ankara's hopes haven't been justified.

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has discussed Assad's visit to Moscow with Putin.

There are no doubts that, in case of a total elimination of the terrorist organizations in Syria, which is very unlikely, President Assad will remain in power, which is not in Turkey's interests.

For Ankara, such a situation means a complete failure of its Syria policy. At the same time, Turkey also fears a new wave of Syrian refugees, as well as the strengthening of the PYD - the Syrian wing of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

Moreover, earlier Assad promised autonomy to Syria's Kurds who are currently fighting the Free Syrian Army and the "Islamic State".

PYD is also actively supporting the PKK.

The plan of Russia and Iran for Assad to remain in power is also not in the interests of the Kurdish administration in Iraq- a true and first ally of Turkey in the region.

Earlier, the head of the Kurdish autonomy in northern Iraq, Massoud Barzani repeatedly stated that the PKK must leave the autonomy's territory.

Previously armed clashes broke out between the PKK and the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) in the territory of Iraq's Kurdish administration.

Barzani also warned the PKK and the PDKI that they shouldn't use the administration's territory as a place for a violent conflict.

According to some political experts in Turkey, the recent events on the territory of the administration occurred because Erbil (the capital of the administration) actively cooperates with Ankara.

For this reason, some analysts do not rule out that Iran stands behind the events in the territory of the Kurdish administration in Iraq.

Iran wants to weaken the influence of Ankara in the region amid the military operations in Syria.

An interesting fact is that the armed forces of the Kurdish administration are only nominally united under a common command. Some warlords in the administration obey the party leaders. This makes the administration's army more vulnerable.

It is not ruled out that the conflict with the central government of Iraq, military operations in Iraq and Syria, as well as the activity of the PKK, PYD can lead to a civil war in the territory of the Kurdish administration.

It should be stressed that earlier in the mid-1990s, a civil war was waged in the territory of the administration.

The Turkish media reported that Erbil is ready to hold a referendum on the status of the administration amid the current events and afterwards, it will consider the issue of joining Turkey.

Erbil has not officially confirmed this information.

But it is not a secret that the administration has repeatedly stated that sooner or later, a referendum on the status will be held.

Even if the administration holds a referendum, the further situation in Erbil will still depend on Turkey.

The future situation in the region is unknown. But even if the crisis is resolved in Syria, a new conflict will occur in the region.

Edited by CN


Rufiz Hafizoglu is the head of Trend Agency's Arabic news service, follow him on Twitter: @rhafizoglu

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