The U.S., UK and France’s coordinated strikes on numerous government targets in Syria early on Saturday targeting alleged chemical weapons sites will most likely not be followed up by more attacks, according to Turkish politicians and foreign policy experts
The air strikes that arrived in response to suspected poison gas attack in Douma which killed dozens of people on April 7, was seen as a move in the right direction, but not enough by Presidential Spokesperson İbrahim Kalın.
‘’Efforts towards eliminating chemical weapons will fall short of bringing an end to instability in the region. The main target must be stopping the war in Syria,’’ Kalın said, calling on the international community to collaborate in preventing further possible chemical attacks.’’
Foreign policy experts and politicians who spoke to Ahval, however, said that Turkey’s expectations of intensified attacks against Syria will be in vain.
Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) Vice Chairman Öztürk Yılmaz, recalling Turkey’s stance toward bringing down the Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria, said, ‘’This operation demonstrates how much Turkey has faltered with regard to Syria.’’
Yılmaz said that the issue of lost trust between Turkey and the U.S. would not disappear because Turkey has supported this operation, adding, ‘’Turkey has thus far depicted an image of an unreliable partner.’’
Retired Turkish Ambassador to the U.S., Yalım Eralp said that what Turkey desired vis-a-vis Syria – that is to say, an international strategy to bring down the Syrian regime – had not even crossed U.S. President Donald Trump’s mind. Underscoring that the goal was for the Assad regime to continue, Eralp noted that the U.S had no choice but to cooperate with Russia in the region.
The Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) first Foreign Minister Yaşar Yakış explained that Ankara should not get too ahead of itself in attempting to add momentum to plans of toppling the Assad regime.
Sa that Ankara has been mistaken in its Syria policy from the very beginning, Yakış said that Turkey would have been forced to face reality regarding Syria in the near future. ‘’That day is slowly arriving,’’ Yakış noted.
The former foreign stressed that behind the U.S.-led air strike against the U.S., was its loss of grounds in Syria against Russia and Russia’s increasing grip in the region.
‘’I see this is a move by the U.S. as an effort towards turning the trajectory in Syria, in its own favor,’’ Yakış said.