18:56 GMT +306 December 2016
    Female fighters from the Kurdish People Protection Unit (YPG) take a break on the front line in the northeastern Syrian city of Hasakeh on September 4, 2015.

    Turkey Freaks Out After Russia Insists Kurds Participate in Syrian Talks

    © AFP 2016/ Delil Souleiman
    Middle East
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    In the fight against Daesh, few forces have been as effective on the ground as the Kurdish YPG. While Russia has insisted that the group be part of the Syrian peace talks, Turkey has steadfastly refused, calling the YPG a "terrorist group."

    Earlier this month, the Kurdish People’s Protection Units retook the Kara-choh oilfield from Daesh, also known as IS/Islamic State. Located in Syria’s Hasakah province, the field provided Daesh with vast amounts of crude that was sold on the illegal oil markets.

    This is only one example of the YPG’s success in combatting the terrorist group across northern Iraq and Syria. The Kurdish fighters have proven themselves to be one of the most effective ground forces in Syria.

    In light of this fact, the Russian government has been pushing for the YPG’s inclusion in Syrian peace talks. But Turkey views the presence of Kurdish forces along its border as a threat, and has refused to acknowledge the YPG’s effectiveness.

    "Turkey will be supporting any initiative for a political solution in Syria, except the only criteria we want is that the moderate opposition should be represented by their own will and initiative. There should not be any representation of terrorist groups around the table," Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said during the World Economic Forum in Davos.

    "Some circles, including Russia, they want to spoil the opposition side, putting some other elements in the opposition side like the YPG, which has been collaborating with the regime and attacking the moderate opposition."

    Turkey’s opposition threatens to delay the UN-hosted peace talks, extending the violence in Syria. Davutoglu said that he already met with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon earlier to discuss his concerns.

    The prime minister’s comments follow a familiar pattern of anti-Kurdish policies implemented by Ankara.

    On Tuesday, reports surfaced that Turkish troops had crossed into Syria. While ostensibly aimed at liberating the city of Jarabulus from Daesh, the decision came as the YPG was preparing to launch its own operation against the city.

    Ankara may be more interested in keeping the YPG from gaining a foothold near the Turkish border. The government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has long warned that a Kurdish advance west of the Euphrates would result in a military response.

    Reports also indicated that the Turkish military did not engage Daesh, and that members of the terrorist organization remained unresponsive to the Turkish presence.

    The Erdogan administration has also launched brutal operations against Kurdish communities within Turkey. These security raids have left hundreds dead, including civilians, and resulted in the arrest of a number of Turkish academics who have vocally opposed the government’s treatment of Turkish Kurds.


    Erdogan Sets Sights on Syria, But is He Fighting Daesh or Democratic Kurds?
    Ankara's Orwellian Reality: Erdogan Converting Turkey Into Police State
    Turkey Must Have Major Influence on Syrian Peace Process
    Syrian peace talks, Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), Daesh, United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Ahmet Davutoglu, Turkey, Russia, Syria
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    • michaelin reply tovendor(Show commentHide comment)
      vendor, might also be dangerous too. :)
    • Mother Gorilla
      What are Turkish interests: oil, Kurds and removal of Assad?

      What are Russian interests: it has got its own oil, it is neutral between the powers in the region, it just wants to beat murdering Daesh! It is clear that its suggestions should be respected any talks that take place!
    • enkidu.gilgamesh
      Turkey is on the wrong path and will lose everything at the end.
      Weird coalition! Unity of enemies! Domino Effect!
      #COP21 #geoengineering #SRM #HAARP
    • qvasko 15
      Kurds must be included....
    • anne00marie
      Why are Turkey laying down the rules on how a sovereign state sorts out their problems?
    • vendorin reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
      michael, well, he is at war isn't he? It is better to be doing something than sitting in an office in Damascus waiting for the Russian lead. If he is the president then even if the danger knocks at the door his duty is to do everything it takes, even giving his life, for his country.
    • ron
      Quote: "There should not be any representation of terrorist groups around the table," Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said during the World Economic Forum in Davos."

      Would that not rule out Turkey?
    • cast235
      Russia have a point, when Damascus offered them to listen. They earning merits, but they want a government of their own inside Syria. Russia MUST explain them what will be.
      Don't give them a false or unclear idea, later to have a mess like in E Ukraine.

      Second, Russia will NOT be able to leave Syria. Why? As soon as Russia is gone, Turkey will use NATO , as shield and will attack Syria. As it done in the past.
      Once it gets the shielding from NATO it will sneak inside Syria to kill the KURD'S, this will force Russia back, or let it happen.
      Kurd's will need protection.
    • Ivan Buckeye
      Good move by Russian oficials. Keep the fire to the Turkish abettors. If you go there...just be sincere.
    • ivanwa88
      Turkey is clearly showing its priorities every interest in eliminating perceived Kurd threat, not interested in peace in Syria. If he gets his way with Kurds he will do anything and everything to abort peace talks. Russia realises there are dangers and concessions with including Kurds but also realises UNSC not interested in going against coalition of evil to solve Kurd dilemma. Putin realises there will never be real peace in Syria unless Kurds are found a home. It is obvious Erdoram only sees talks as temporary impasse. Really is time for UNSC to speak up and bring about a working resolution to not only this issue but also Israel-Palestine. Otherwise 2016 will be a bloodbath and the end of UN and NATO.
    • michaelin reply tovendor(Show commentHide comment)
      vendor, quite true, after all, initiative is still the name of the game, militarily speaking. :)
    • vendorin reply toivanwa88(Show commentHide comment)
      ivanwa88, you perhaps, and I hope I am guessing it right, wanted to say people of Russia and Putin, I think, may be realising...?

      If you say I am incorrect, may I ask you, are you their spokesman? You have a personal connection with the President of Russia, and you know what he realised? Wow.

      I will subscribe to your replies if it is true :)
    • choticastilein reply tovendor(Show commentHide comment)
      vendor, Well said Vendor!
    • in reply tomarcanhalt(Show commentHide comment)
      marcanhalt, maybe aim is the better word. The aim of the West/NATO/Israel from the gitgo in Iraq, Libya and now Syria has been the creation of failed states wracked by misery and terrorism to keep them weak. No reason to listen to their lying words when they actions speak volumes.

      The greater ends are varied, imo -- the destruction of the nation state for the imposition of a NWO dictatorship (psyopped as humanitarian of course), the extinction of the concept of the worth of the individual, or individual human dignity, the satiation of Israel's psychotic paranoia (impossible to reach of course, but worth any amount of human misery). The evildoers are protected by the masses not comprehending such evil actually exists.
    • marcanhaltin reply to (Show commentHide comment)
      maxxus, okay...
    • Baybars in reply toanne00marie(Show commentHide comment)
      anne00marie, They learned that from the British and the Americans and most recently from the occupiers of Palestine. That is why only Russia is in real opposition to Turkey and everyone else just pays lip service to Erdogan the Wahhabi zealot.
    • Baybars in reply toron(Show commentHide comment)
      ron, In a normal world it certainly would. I have not detected any signs of normality for a while though.
    • in reply tomarcanhalt(Show commentHide comment)
      marcanhalt, aaah, I see you're not convinced. Well, all roads lead to Rome.
    • in reply to (Show commentHide comment)
      maxxus, Well in those days more to washinton/tel aviv. :)
    • in reply to (Show commentHide comment)
      Jet fuel can't melt steel beams, Wink, wink.
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