Who was given what for Russia to withdraw from Syria? - NEDRET ERSANEL

Who was given what for Russia to withdraw from Syria?

There are other questions, too. Although the first thing heard from the US was, “We were not given prior information about the withdrawal,” Washington is the first party – or one of the first parties – to the agreement. The meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Barack Obama yesterday is a “joint confirmation of the steps taken.” The other party was Europe. Europe compromised too.

What about the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) or the Democratic Union Party (PYD), or those waiting eagerly in Syria, Iraq and Turkey? They can add this to all the other times they were cheated.

And of course, what is the agreement with Syrian leader Bashar Assad? What was promised to or promised by Moscow?

Another piece of news from yesterday: “The European Space Agency and Russian space agency Roscosmos launched Proton, a rocket with a tracking relay satellite to determine if there is life on Mars. The satellite is going to send the space module Schiaparelli to the surface of the red planet…” Europe and Russia?

Let us approach the matter from this angle…

Russia and PKK, 'enough already, go away'

1. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's Azerbaijan visit was canceled after the Ankara attack. The previously planned visit had also coincided with the February 17 terror attack. Baku said, “If that's the case, then we will come.”

2. Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu's Jordan visit was canceled.

3. There was also a critical telephone call between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister Davutoğlu right before the attack, ahead of the Geneva summit.

4. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's statement just before the explosion: “We have information that the Turkish Armed Forces are preparing to deploy troops in Syria.”

5. Russian Federation Council Defense and Security Committee Deputy Chairman Franz Klintsevich's statement right after the attack: “They are pushing Ankara to intervene in Syria.”

6. The Geneva negotiations started.

7. A sweeping operation that started in the southeast in Yüksekova, whose success, like those before it, is already obvious.

8. Also right before the Ankara attack (March 12): Ten terror organizations active in Turkey, including the PKK, announced they would collaborate.

9. NATO's launch of AWACS, one of the most distinct symbols of the NATO/US-Russia competition on the Turkey-Syria border. The General Staff said: “We aim to demonstrate the unity and solidarity of the alliance and dissuade the potential hostile threats aimed at the integrity of ally territory through NATO's support to Turkey.”

10. The EU's post-attack statement along the lines of “We consider it an attack on us.”

11. Attention: Some figures from within the Kurdish political movement getting in contact with the PKK in Dohuk and saying, “Enough, drop your weapons and leave.”

Hidden Geneva: 'We are withdrawing from Syria'

“Russian forces are withdrawing from Syria. Russian head of state Putin said, 'I believe the Defense Ministry and the military have fulfilled their duty' and instructed Defense Minister Shoigu and Foreign Minister Lavrov to start immediately withdrawing the forces sent to Syria to back the Assad regime. The Kremlin made a statement saying, 'The head of state's instruction to keep the bases in Hmeimim and Tarsus safe will be heeded.'”

Let us think: Could the Russian discourses we listed above have taken place before “the decision to withdraw?” It does not seem possible. Then the Geneva negotiations that started Monday to stop the civil war in Syria, which is now in its sixth year, have two sides to them – one explicit and the other hidden. The sole official clue that they are both active at the same time is UN Special Representative Staffan De Mistura's this statement: “The only plan B for Syria is to return to war.” It seems the Geneva meeting will yield the most successful outcomes.

And look at what Ankara has to say…

A) Turkish Armed Forces (TSK): “Some media outlets published news on March 14 containing statements that 'Turkey just crossed the Syrian border and has already started to dig trenches 100 meters inside' in reference to Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov. Such claims are false.” (Press statement, March 14, TSK's official website, 7:50 pm) I am specifically noting the time and in fact the minute, because the time international news agencies announced Russia's decision to withdraw from Syria at 7:49 pm.

B) President Erdoğan: “Some circles in our country and the world are at a crossroads. They will either side with us or the terrorists. There is no middle ground to this.” (“Terörün tanımı yeniden yapılmalı” (Terror should be redefined), March 15, Milliyet.)

So they are conversing. Of course, if you speak that language…

Who will protect the PKK/PYD?

After the February 17 Ankara attack, Turkey proved the terrorists' links to the PKK/PYD and showed the evidence to its allies, especially the US, who overtly and officially turned a blind eye to the presence of the terror organization in Syria. However, neither Washington nor the European countries nor the Western media believed this. After the recent attack in Kızılay Square, some accepted that the PKK was behind this attack before Turkey even presented any proof.

As I write this column, news channels are broadcasting that the Russian war jets in Syria started to leave their bases. Let us wonder who will protect the PYD, which has been trying to join the two sides in northern Syria, and all other independent or affiliated terrorist Kurdish organizations now?

Terrorist leader Cemil Bayık told The Times, “We want to oust Erdoğan. We are putting up a life-or-death fight for this.” True. That is exactly where they are. Between life and death. They will not remain there.

They are all included in the agreement, but first we had to take the photograph. Then we are going to dissect it pixel by pixel.



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