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    Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan addresses the audience during a meeting in Ankara, Turkey, October 3, 2016. Picture taken October 3, 2016.

    Failed Coup Cools Turkey President Erdogan Backing for Syria Regime Change

    © REUTERS / Umit Bektas
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    Turkish President Recep Erdogan is having second thoughts over his long-time support of regime change in Syria, partly as a result of the recent coup attempt by elements of Turkey’s military, the private intelligence firm Soufan Group said in a report on Wednesday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The Ankara-Moscow rapprochement was cemented during two recent meetings between Erdogan and Russian President Vladimir Putin, the latest on Monday.

    "While Erdogan was a major proponent of US-backed efforts against the [Syrian President Bashar] Assad regime for years, internal security threats and the risk of a prospective Kurdish enclave on the border seem to have moved Turkish interests closer to Russia’s," the report stated.

    Spillover from the conflict in Syria has forced Turkey to reconsider its overall strategy, and its efforts now focus on countering the onslaught of attacks by the Islamic State terrorist group and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), as well as preventing the creation of a Kurdish enclave in northern Syria, the report explained.

    Moreover, the report noted that Russia has advanced its image as a champion of Turkey’s internal security by supporting Erdogan during and after the failed coup attempt in June, without subjecting Turkey to US and European criticism of the crackdown that followed.

    In addition, Russia’s recent decision to end economic sanctions that were imposed after Turkey shot down a Russian jet last year have benefitted the Turkish economy with the resumption of Russian tourism and the revival of several big energy projects, according to the report.

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