The Patriot Files Forums  

Go Back   The Patriot Files Forums > Military News > Chemical Warfare

Post New Thread  Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 04-10-2018, 11:51 AM
Boats's Avatar
Boats Boats is offline
Senior Member
 

Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 10,596
Arrow Alleged Syrian Regime Chemical Attack Puts Ankara in Tight Spot

Alleged Syrian Regime Chemical Attack Puts Ankara in Tight Spot
By: Dorian Jones - 4-9-19
RE: https://www.voanews.com/a/chemical-a...t/4339362.html

ANKARA —
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was quick to join in the condemnation of Saturday's alleged chemical weapons attack in Syria that killed dozens of civilians. But unlike many of Turkey's western allies, Erdogan refrained from publicly criticizing the Damascus regime's key backers: Tehran and Moscow.

According to local reports, Erdogan spoke Monday with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, where he raised "concerns" over Saturday's attack in eastern Ghouta's Douma district, emphasizing the need to avoid civilian causalities. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov claimed Monday there was no evidence of a chemical weapons attack.

While Erdogan publicly refrained from attacking Moscow, he instead turned his fire on his western allies, accusing them of being insincere in their condemnation of Damascus for the Saturday attack. Syria has denied using chemical weapons throughout the seven-year conflict, including the most recent suspected chemical attack Saturday.

"Erdogan is in a tight spot," said political scientist Cengiz Akar. Allegations of a Syrian regime chemical attack comes after Wednesday's summit in Ankara where Erdogan was pictured holding hands with Damascus' key backers, the Iranian and Russian presidents, claiming success in their cooperation in working to resolve the Syrian civil war.

At a press conference with Putin at Wednesday's summit, Erdogan said he planned for the two countries' military forces to build a hospital for refugees from Ghouta. Iran, Turkey and Russia have been cooperating to bring an end to the civil war under what is the dubbed the "Astana process."

Analysts claim Saturday's attack has put a spotlight on the contradictory position of Turkey's Syria policy.

"Ankara is seen as one of the main supporters of the Syrian rebels, and Ankara's new partner and friend Moscow is bombing these individuals. It's totally unsustainable," said political scientist Akar. Ankara leverage over the Syrian rebels is viewed as invaluable by Moscow in its efforts to bring an end to the conflict.

Analysts suggest Ankara's continued cooperation with Moscow over Syria is due, in part, to Russia's tacit support of the Turkish-led military offensive against the YPG Kurdish militia in the Syrian enclave of Afrin. Ankara accuses the militia of being terrorists linked to a Kurdish insurgency inside Turkey.

"The unique constant of Turkish foreign policy not only in Syria [but] in the entire Near East, is an anti-Kurdish stance. That is the only policy, everything else is negotiable," Akar said.

Role of Afrin

But Lavrov warned Ankara on Monday that Moscow was ready to call time on Turkey's Afrin offensive. "We assume that the simplest way of normalization in Afrin … is to return the territory of Afrin to the control of the Syrian government," he said.

Ankara has repeatedly ruled out the return of Afrin to Damascus's control. "We have no intention or thought of giving it to the [Syrian] regime," Turkish residential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said last month.

Turkish forces in Afrin are continuing to consolidate their presence. Erdogan has declared the offensive would be expanded across northern Syrian to remove the presence of the YPG militia.

"The operations in Syria are obviously important [for Turkey], points out international relations expert Soli Ozel of Istanbul's Kadir Has University. "How long does Turkey think of staying there we have no answer. Presumably, Turkey will stay there until the end of the Syrian civil war."

Ankara views its military presence in Syria as important leverage in final deliberations over the future of its neighbor. But analysts warn Ankara's cooperation with Moscow over Syria with all its contradictions could become increasingly more difficult to manage.

"When we see Syria, we notice that there are differences of opinion which carry the seeds of problems," said political columnist Semih Idiz of Al Monitor website.
__________________
Boats

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

"IN GOD WE TRUST"
sendpm.gif Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 04-10-2018, 11:53 AM
Boats's Avatar
Boats Boats is offline
Senior Member
 

Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 10,596
Arrow Trump Weighs Response to Alleged Syria Chemical Attack

Trump Weighs Response to Alleged Syria Chemical Attack
Last Updated: April 09, 2018 5:40 PM
VOA News
RE: https://www.voanews.com/a/trump-weig...a/4338908.html

U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday condemned the "heinous" alleged chemical weapons attack in Syria, saying he would make "major decisions" within 24 to 48 hours about how the U.S would respond.

Trump told his Cabinet at a White House meeting that the U.S. would figure out who was responsible for the attack, whether it was Syria, Russia, Iran or "all of them together."

"We're looking at that very strongly, very seriously," he said.

Earlier, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said the United States is not ruling out military action against Syria, after Trump tweeted there would be a "big price to pay" for what he called the "mindless chemical attack" in a rebel-held suburb of Damascus that killed at least 40 people Saturday.

"The first thing we have to look at is why are chemical weapons still being used at all when Russia was the framework guarantor of removing all the chemical weapons," Mattis said, as he met with Qatari Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani at the Pentagon.

Britain says Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson spoke to Acting U.S. Secretary of State John Sullivan by phone and the two "agreed that, based on current media reports and reports from those on the ground, this attack bore hallmarks of previous chemical weapons attacks by the Assad regime."

Syria has denied using chemical weapons throughout the conflict that began in 2011, including the most recent suspected chemical attack. Russia said there is no evidence Syria carried out such an attack.

The U.S. president has blamed Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for the attack and in a rare direct condemnation of Russia's leader Vladimir Putin, Trump tweeted Sunday that "President Putin, Russia and Iran are responsible" for their support of "Animal Assad."

The U.N. Security Council met Monday afternoon at the request of multiple members.

U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley said both Russia and Iran could stop the Syrian government’s “murderous destruction”, adding that Moscow’s hands are “covered in the blood of Syrian children.”

“We have reached the moment when the world must see justice done,” Haley told the council. “History will record this as the moment when the Security Council either discharged its duty or demonstrated its utter and complete failure to protect the people of Syria. Either way, the United States will respond.”

Moscow’s envoy Vassily Nebenzia said the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), which is tasked with investigating such allegations, could send a fact-finding mission “tomorrow” to Damascus.

“There the Syrian authorities and Russian troops will provide conditions to travel to the area of the alleged incident,” Nebenzia said.

But Nebenzia went on to say that Russian experts have already visited the site, collected soil samples, interviewed witnesses and medical personnel, and that no chemical weapons attack had taken place.

New Attribution Mechanism

While the OPCW fact-finding mission is mandated to investigate alleged chemical attacks, it does not have the authority to attribute blame. That was the domain of the Joint Investigative Mechanism, which was dissolved after Moscow vetoed a renewal of its mandate in November. The United States put forward a new proposal Monday to Security Council members for a new attribution mechanism, but it was not immediately clear whether it would win the necessary Russian support.

Meanwhile, Syria and Russia say two Israeli war planes operating in Lebanese air space carried out an attack early Monday on an air base in central Syria.

Israel's military did not comment on the strikes against the T4 base in Homs province.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said 14 people were killed, including Iranian forces.

In February, Israel accused Iranian forces of using the same site to send a drone to Israeli territory. It responded by attacking Syrian air defense and Iranian military targets within Syria, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pledged to "continue to harm anyone who tries to harm us."

Initial Syrian state media reports Monday blamed the United States, which along with France denied responsibility.

The alleged chemical attack occurred amid new attacks on the last rebel enclave in eastern Ghouta.

First responders said they discovered families suffocated in their homes and shelters with foam on their mouths. Relief workers said more than 500 people, mostly women and children, were brought to medical centers with difficulty breathing, foaming at the mouth and their eyes burning.

The Civil Defense and Syrian American Medical Society said patients gave off a chlorine-like smell, and some had blue skin, an indication of oxygen deprivation.

"Dropping poison gas in a way that attacks women and children down in the shelters is a way to try to panic the civilians into leaving and cut the ground underneath the rebels," University of Pennsylvania political science professor Ian Lustick told VOA.

VOA's Victor Beattie, William Gallo, Jeff Seldin and Margaret Besheer contributed to this report.
__________________
Boats

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

"IN GOD WE TRUST"
sendpm.gif Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 11:00 PM.


Powered by vBulletin, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.