Mehmet Yuva from the University of Damascus has recalled that Turkey's Operation Euphrates Shield in Syria was followed by the liberation of Eastern Aleppo and Eastern Ghouta, which he said "evidently means that all these processes are interrelated."
"Eastern Ghouta is a very important area for the United States and Israel, as well as the entire southern front. Accordingly, the cleansing of terrorists from Eastern Ghouta means these players' complete surrender in this direction and the suppression of the activity of local [militant] groups," Yuva said.
He also stressed that Turkey's stance on the events would be significantly different "if Ankara did not show political will, failing to clinch agreements with Russia and Iran and agreeing with the Syrian Army's operation in the area.
Yuva also stressed that there have been no provocations in Syria's Idlib governorate during the ongoing military operation in Eastern Ghouta, and that Turkey has essentially supported Syrian government forces.
According to him, "the situation in Idlib deserves attention because we are talking about an area where thousands of militants are located."
"During the cleanup operation in Eastern Ghouta, militants were forced to move to Idlib. Despite all the calls for 'opening new fronts and organizing attacks', no offensive on government forces were launched from Idlib territory. If Turkey was not part of this [cleaning], its implementation on Syrian soil would be much more difficult," Yuva underscored.
Late last week, the Russian Defense Ministry said that civilians have continued to leave Eastern Ghouta via the humanitarian corridors, and that more than 108,000 people have already fled the area since the introduction of daily humanitarian pauses.
The Syrian Army has already liberated at least 70 percent of the territory of Eastern Ghouta, which has been controlled by armed anti-government groups including the al-Nusra Front* since 2012.
The views and opinions expressed by Mehmet Yuva are those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.
*a terrorist group banned in Russia
The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.