Turkey Edges Toward Direct War With Syria in Idlib Province

Erdogan says conflict only a matter of time

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says that a military operation in northwest Syria to expel Syrian forces from Idlib is only “a matter of time,” as Turkey continues to send more troops into the area.

Turkey has launched multiple attacks against the Syrian military in the past month, mostly to try to slow Syrian military advances against al-Qaeda. Erdogan has repeatedly demanded Syria abandon the Idlib Province to the Islamist groups, and now intends to try to directly force this.

Erdogan presented this new war as necessary because talks with Russia failed to get them to expel Syria from this Syrian province. Russia, however, is warning Turkey against trying to impose a military solution in northwest Syria.

Turkey is trying to present operations in support of al-Qaeda’s territorial control as a humanitarian necessity, and Syria’s fighting as endangering civilians.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.