NEWS DESK- al-Sham Center director for Democratic Studies and Human Rights Aktham Naisse said that Turkey fears the contagion of self-determination to the nationalities and other peoples in Turkey. The region is booming with major political revolutions and great political attractions which puts Turkey’s future as a central state on the back of impasse.
Aktham Naisse confirmed that the influential forces in the Syrian situation are well aware that if they do not agree with each other, all of them will lose, in one way or another, so it is natural that they agree to arrange, organize and divide the Syrian situation to suit the direct and indirect interests of those countries.
Regarding the future of Turkey in the region, Naissa said: “I do not think that Turkey has a long-term ability to face the challenges of its occupation of the Syrian territories for a long time. The direct and open occupation will open new horizons for armed conflict between Syria as a state and Turkey and the Kurds. In addition to the international legal pressures as direct occupation violates the international law rules and the charter of the United Nations and others.
These remarks were made by the director of al-Sham Center for Democratic Studies and Human Rights Aktham Naisa, in a special interview with Hawar News Agency, on Turkish policy towards Syria, and military intervention in some Syrian regions such as Idlib.
The following is the text of the interview:
What are the conditions that paved the way for Turkish intervention in Idlib, and in your opinion, who is the affected by this interference?
The Turkish policy in Syria is fundamentally linked to the Kurdish cause in Syria, Iraq and Turkey where Turkey has adopted its political positions mainly “not entirely” on this ground which became more sensitive and heavy after the referendum in Kurdistan Iraq, where the heart of many of the existing political equations which contributed to the escalation of Turkey’s concerns about the movement of the Kurds, specifically the Kurdish Workers Party and the Democratic Union Party in Syria.
Based on this, we can predict the main directions of the Turkish political compass in Syria, which is based mainly on Turkey’s fears of the claim for self-determination’s contagion to the other nationalities and peoples that Turkey is rich with and the national and religious pluralism that coexist in a relatively unstable situation. The region is boiling with revolutions and great political engagements, which puts the future of Turkey as a Central State on the back of impasse, as no Turkish government, whatever its popularity or repressive power can bear the responsibility of doing so in its time.
If the Turkish intervention is contrary to Astana’s decisions according to the Syrian regime’ tale, in your opinion why are Russia and Iran, Turkey’s partner in the auspices of the Astana talks silent?
Astana’s agreements which led to the intervention of Turkey in Idlib, identified three major consensuses between Russia and the Syrian regime, Iran, Turkey and perhaps Saudi Arabia to a simple extent and with American blessing.
The first is: to relieve the military pressure on the regime which is formed by the armed groups supported by Turkey and to weaken the military strength of those supported by Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states. This is in the Iranian and Russian interests as well. It reduces the Russian and Iranian military effort in the Syrian north and gives them the opportunity to open other fronts in hotter and even more decisive areas, as happened in Deir ez-Zor today, in addition to the grand prize of the Syrian regime obtained by allowing him to enter and control Aleppo. While on the other hand to allow Turkey to occupy a vast space separating the main areas of Kurds and create a difficult obstacle to the attempt of the Kurdish forces to communicate among its popular, social and political incubators, and perhaps this was reached in the agreement to reduce the tension in Syria, and recently, the invitations to Sochi Conference caught my attention where an invitation was sent to the Democratic Union In Qamishlo, another was sent to the Democratic Union of Ain al-Arab/Kobani which reflects the undeclared content of the recognition of the division of Kurdish areas, and prompted me to wonder whether these calls, if they are sincere an attempt to divide the Kurdish forces politically! In response to Turkish mere desire.
Second: agreements concerning common economic interests among the regional and international countries, some of which we have witnessed in the media. The economic agreements and major projects agreed upon have been revealed, and we do not forget the issue of oil and its wells and other issues.
Although the Syrian regime is occasionally demanding the exit of the Turks and their mercenaries from Idlib areas, Jarablus and others, for local political inquiries. However, the deal receives all the satisfaction of all the parties, which we are very keen to maintain with utmost accuracy and rigor.
Third: The terrorism, religious extremism and its danger to the future of the regional social strata issue, whether in Turkey or Iran, and the results of the opening of religious or national conflict in those countries and its regional and international influence.
Some reports refer to agreements between Russia, Turkey and Iran to share areas of influence in Syria, you think the Turkish intervention in Idlib comes within the framework of these agreements?
The forces that are really influencing the current situation in Syria, especially after the defeat of the Saudi-Qatari project and its failure, are Russia, Iran, Turkey and the United States. These regional and international powers are well aware that if they do not agree with each other, all of them will lose in one way or another. To coordinate, organize and divide, the Syrian situation, in a way that suits the interests of those countries.
There are reports of agreements and coordination between Turkey and al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria Hayat Tahrir al-Sham / al-Nusra. How do you read Turkish coordination with al-Qaeda?
I do not rule out that Turkey and other countries support any armed or political force that acts as a tool to achieve its policies, whether it is al-Qaeda or Hayat Tahrir al-Sham or IS mercenaries or (…). The issue of terrorism for the West and Turkey is limited to forces that pose a threat to their security, political or military interests no more or less. Turkey sees the Kurdish Workers Party more dangerous than IS mercenaries, Jabhit al-Nusra, because it is the slanted and unfair scale, the powerful states toward weak peoples.
Do you think that Turkey wants to influence Syria’s political and economic future by intervening in a number of Syrian regions?
The Syrian-Turkish border stretches over more than 80 km long. It includes the geopolitical angle of the Turkish back and its gateway to the Middle East and Africa. Turkey has every desire and political will to achieve this desire to have a strong and influential position in Syrian politics. Turkish political behavior since 2011 and the beginning of the Syrian crisis, and its involvement in the support of the Islamic armed parties, as well as its support for Muslim Brothers which is still standing until now, and also support for projects and other political hopes.
The Turkish presence in the Syrian political process is very blatant and has reached the point of imbalance. It will not abandon its political position, but will make every effort to have a word in the Syrian future.
Turkey occupies a number of other Syrian cities today. In your opinion, is Turkey exploiting the Syrian situation in order to include these Syrian areas in Turkey in the future?
I do not think that Turkey has a long-term ability to face the challenges of its occupation of the Syrian territories for a long time, not at the international, regional or domestic levels. The direct and open occupation will open new horizons for the armed conflict between Syria as a state and between Turkey and the Kurds. In addition to the international legal pressures as the direct occupation in violation of the rules of international law and the charter of the United Nations and others, so most likely, the Turkish policy will be to establish areas loyal in the lands occupied with the support of the Syrian armed men, this will be maintained within the Syrian state with special privileges and supervision of Turkey or supporters of Turkey, mostly in the form of self-management or private banking, such as the Lebanese model at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, to ensure agreements of international accordance and perhaps leaked to us news about the establishment or formation of governments in Idlib and Teftnaz suggests that or pave the way for it.
Do you have another word to add?
The Islamic project in general has fallen downhill and is now in the last mortification, and imagine a dictatorship that lasted for 14 centuries, it cannot easily retreat or be defeated, the more the project deteriorated, the fiercer the resistance becomes, Islamic terrorism poses a real threat to the security and stability of the region first and to stability and global security as well. I do not think that this war against terrorism will end before its military and ideological eradication is finally over. It may take a decade or two or more.