10:20 GMT02 December 2020
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    Turkey and Saudi Arabia are apparently ready to send ground forces to the Syrian battlefield, but although a direct invasion has not yet been launched, an indirect one is already happening, political scientist Yuri Pochta told Radio Sputnik.

    "The fact of the matter is that the invasion is already taking place, but it is indirect. Turkey and Saudi Arabia are acting through rebel groups that are fighting against Damascus," Pochta explained. "These militants have been less active since Russia launched its aerial campaign. They are losing in several regions."

    Indeed, the Syrian Arab Army, assisted by Russian warplanes and Hezbollah fighters, has managed to turn the tide of war in recent months and is currently on the offensive. This year, Damascus-led forces have scored major victories in Latakia and other provinces, while militants from Daesh and other terrorist groups are retreating. Turkey and Saudi Arabia have backed some of these rebels. 

    Syrian government troops walk inside the key town of Salma in Latakia province, Syria
    © AP Photo / SANA
    Syrian government troops walk inside the key town of Salma in Latakia province, Syria

    Ankara and Riyadh have "apparently decided to 'save the day': to launch a direct ground operation in Syria and overthrow President Bashar al-Assad," he suggested.

    Evidence, supporting this sentiment, has surfaced this week. On Thursday, Russia's Ministry of Defense announced that Ankara was "actively," but covertly preparing to launch a military campaign in Syria. On the same day, Saudi Arabia confirmed its readiness to take part in a ground operation, if the US-led coalition would support one.

    Briefing of the Russian Defence Ministry spokesman (February 4, 2016):"First of all, it is to be reminded that the…

    Опубликовано Минобороны России 4 февраля 2016 г.

    Pochta warned that Turkey and Saudi Arabia would further complicate the situation in Syria if they decide to send ground forces to an already overcrowded battlefield. Many experts have long pointed out that resolving Syrian crisis is a major challenge due to the sheer number of stakeholders involved.

    "Who will they be fighting against? Will it not turn into a real war, involving Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Syria? Then there is Russia… And Turkey is a member of NATO. The situation is increasingly exacerbated at a time when hundreds of different rebel groups take part in the fighting. Syria is being transformed into a gray zone. Local, regional and global players are all pursuing their own interests. The majority wants to destroy the Syrian state and society. This is tragic," the analyst added.


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    Middle East, Russian aerial campaign, ground military operation, ground troops, Syrian conflict, invasion, geopolitics, Daesh, Turkey, Syria, Saudi Arabia
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