Issued by CEMO Center - Paris
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Erdogan is raving, calling on Russia and Syrian army to withdraw from Idbli and Aleppo

Saturday 22/February/2020 - 07:04 PM
The Reference
Ahmed Sami Abdel-Fatah
طباعة
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has again threatened to launch another military operation in Idlib, in Syria. Moreover, he has called on the Syrian Arab army and Russia to withdraw from Idlib and Aleppo, which have been freed recently.
In a speech delivered February 19, Erdogan told the parliamentary bloc of the Turkish ruling Justice and Development Party that a military operation was about to be launched in Idlib. Russia and the Syrian Arab army have rejected the Turkish threat.
The Kremlin has said a confrontation between Turkey and the Syrian Arab army will be the “worst scenario”.
Erdogan's adventure in Syria has exposed a gap between Erdogan’s threats in public and the situation on the ground as the Turkish president is gripped by his own dreams or illusions. 
In fact, Moscow has changed the balance of power in Syria for the sake of the Syrian Arab army. That has forced Ankara to continuously draw on diplomacy to settle its disputes with Russia over Syria.
Russia believes that the Syrian Arab army has the right to control all its territories, including Idlib. However, Ankara believes the Idlib war will drive around 3 million Syrian refugees to flee to Turkey. 
Moreover, the Syrian Arab army's control of Idlib will deprive Turkey from its last card in Syria. That explains why Turkey persists on backing the terrorist groups in Idlib. 
In case of a Turkish military operation in Idlib, there will be a number of scenarios as follows:
Attrition war: The war may continue further the Turkish plans, especially if Russia provides the Syrian Arab army with air support.  That will prolong the war, which will negatively impact the Turkish economy.
A direct Russian-Turkish clash: This is scenario is highly likely, especially as Turkey is aware that Russia is an obstacle to its influence in Idlib. 
- Diplomacy: In this scenario, Turkey may embark on a military operation to force Russia to make concessions in negotiations. Russia, too, will try to cause big losses for Turkey to force it to make concessions.
NATO support: The only possible scenario for Turkey to win will be to get NATO support. In this scenario, NATO will provide Turkey with Patriot system, which may change the balance of power on the ground. 


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