Ankara, June 22, 2015/ Independent Balkan News Agency
The Kurds to gain access to the Mediterranean?
Turkish Press: “The fall of Tal Abyad is another defeat for Erdogan”
By Manolis Kostidis
Turkey appears deeply troubled by the latest wins of the Kurds against the Islamic State in Tal Abyad, one of the most important border posts between Syria and Turkey. Ankara now fear that the Kurds, with the assistance of the US, aim to reach the port of Latakia in the Mediterranean, which is the main seaport in Syria.
Tal Abyad was in the hands of jihadists of the Islamic State, but the Kurds with the help of aerial bombings by the US managed to take control of the city and cut the jihadist’s supply rout in half. After their latest win the Kurds have created three “cantons” in northern Syria. Turkey views as a “threat” the situation that has been created in the region.
Erdogan did not consider the Islamic State a threat, but he views Kurds as a threat
“When we shared the border in Tal Abyad with the Islamic State we were keeping the Akcakale (Turkey) – Syria borderline open, but once the city was taken over by the Kurds, we began talking of a threat to the border. The strategy followed the Erdogan-Davutoglu duo in Syria is taking daily blows”, says Hurriyet columnist Cengiz Çandar.
Extraordinary council with update by the “pashas” and MIT
The Turkish government is concerned that the developments in northern Syria suggest that approaches the moment of the creation of an autonomous Kurdish region in northern Syria. This is why the main topic of discussion in last Monday’s cabinet meeting was the developments in Syria.
“Both the generals, and Hakan Fidan (MIT) agree that the invasion of the Kurds of the YPG (offshoot of the PKK in Syria) is not accidental, but rather is part of the plan to open up a corridor for the natural resources of northern Iraq to reach the Mediterranean”, Hürriyet reports.
In the Turkish capital they are concerned that after Kobani and Tal Abyad the YPG will proceed west to Aleppo and the Mediterranean to create a northern Kurdish “bow” in Syria. If this happens, the Kurds for the first time will gain access to the sea, something that will upgrade them strategically.
Ankara fears the creation of Kurdistan
At the same time, Ankara is worried that northern Syria, northern Iraq and southeastern Turkey form an area where Kurdish rebels will be free to act and which will be extremely difficult to control, expressing its concern about the developments. Turkey considers both the PKK and the YPG “terrorist organizations”. What’s more, Ankara carefully records the impressive rates, as high as 90%, the pro-Kurdish HDP party received in the southeastern provinces in the June 7 parliamentary elections.
Davutoglu speaks of an Assad-Kurds-Islamic State conspiracy
Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, in a television interview to television channel Show TV presented a conspiracy theory, according to which there is a cooperation between the President of Syria Basar Asad, the Kurds and the Islamic State! “We know well that in recent days senior officials from the three sides had meetings in Syria”, said the Turkish Prime Minister.
Many political analysts, however, speak of “a clear defeat” of the foreign policy of Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Ahmet Davutoglu.
In the last four years Turkey has made it clear in every way that it wants to overthrow Assad and supported the opposition forces. But there are many who claim that through Turkey have passed weapons which ended up in the hands of the men of the Islamic State. At the same time, the US at every opportunity claim that hundreds of jihadists reach Syria through Turkey. Opposition parties in Turkey have claimed that in Antioch there is a jihadists headquarters.
“The city Tal Abyad was an important passage from Turkey to Syria. It essentially functioned as a procurement center for the Islamic State to the city Rakka. Dozens of times has been written that in the Turkish region Akcakale, the TIGEM farm was being used as headquarters of the Islamic state”, says Cengiz Çandar.