To this blatant war crime in illegally annexed Afrin is added forced language change, abolished progressive and horizontally organised Kurdish local councils, closed or destroyed schools, women forced into servitude, etc,.etc.
note: this blog thefreeonline.wordpress.com, has now been banned in Turkey and for computers with Turkish origin. see report here:
Yesterday more convoys of Turkish troops, tanks, artillery and supplies were videoed entering Idlib province to fortify the 12 ‘security points’, now and forever major Turkish military bases in the new ”Demilitarized” Zone..
Turkish forces in a convoy on a main highway between Damascus and Aleppo, near the town of Saraqib in Syria’s northern Idlib province, August 29, 2018.Omar Haj Kadour/AFP T ..Turkey deployed hundreds of its soldiers to 12 observation posts that ring Idlib.
You can be sure the Turks will never willingly leave. Popular islamo-fascist dictator Erdogan has boasted he will ”take back all the lands” of the genocidal Ottoman Empire. Turkey has already seized Jarablus, Azas, El Bab and Afrin and all are being ”Turkified” with ethnic cleansing.
Idlib, with 2.5 million people, is the last chaotic bastion of ‘rebel’ groups, earnest young jihadi fighters and their families, many exiled from other parts of Syria. Most have lost their salaries from the US and Arab states as the war winds down.
Turkey has been busy ‘recruiting with threats’, rearming them and paying 500 Turkish lira a month, which with the fall of the currency is worth barely $80 US, hardly enough to eat.
Turkey has a direct border with Idlib via the Iskendun province which it seized and ‘Turkified’ in the last century.
The new agreement, cynically approved by Russia is for a 15 to 20km wide Turkish controlled ‘demilitarized’ zone (though totally militarized) around Idlib occupying about 25% of the province, and growing.
Many factions have signed up with the Turkish paymasters, including the entire NFL, formed by ten FSA groups and the SLF alliance including Ahrar al-Sham and Nour al-Din But the main resistance alliance, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) has refused, though its leader Mohammad al-Julani had negotiated a divisive truce with the Turks before to gain time.
HTS is strong and well organised, has social services, collects taxes and though originally Al Qaida is now no more fundamentalist than various Arab states. But Idlib is a chaos under siege, with so many ‘rebel’ groups and refugees. Dozens of HTS leaders have been assassinated recently and one wing is happy to sell out to Erdogan. Erdogan had sought to delay an attack by trying to convince HTS to dissolve, join the FSA coalition of Turkish-backed rebels, and gertv paid. But the group’s leadership has resisted those calls, and instead vowed to fight on. Turkey could stand aside for a limited government offensive against HTS in return for the regime leaving Turkish presence in Idlib untouched .
Fighters from the Jaysh al-Izza (the Army of Glory), affiliated with the Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army, take part in a training session, Idlib, Syria, April 9, 2018.
The outcome in Idlib is still uncertain. Russia has let Erdogan take control of the situation, in exchange for gas and arms deals in a cynical reminder of the Stalin/Hitler pact. Erdogan is busily threatening Europe again with ‘letting loose the Idlib terrorists’.
All this is very bad news for occupied Afrin, with half the population exiled and ”settlers” arriving every day, many of them arab islamists from Idlib.
Defeated but defiant. Massacres by Turkish troops and the mercenaries of FSA around Afrin as the NATO tanks finally rolled in and the Afrin defense became a guerilla war..
Afrin is now even more cut off with ‘Turkification’ in full swing and Erdogan’s mercenaries seizing goods and property and committing mass rape and kidnapping.
We republish below an excellent analysis of the latest Idlib developments by Aldar Khalil
from ANHA at hawar news.