SECURITY MOSCOW ASKED TURKEY FOR PLANS OF THE AIR CAMPAIGN IN SYRIA

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SECURITY MOSCOW ASKED TURKEY FOR PLANS OF THE AIR CAMPAIGN IN SYRIA
SECURITY MOSCOW ASKED TURKEY FOR PLANS OF THE AIR CAMPAIGN IN SYRIA

Nikolai Surkov

Izvestia, August 26, 2016, p. 1

The Defense Ministry of Russia turned to Turkey with a request to provide additional information about use of aviation in the course of the ground operation against ISIS (activity of the organization is prohibited in Russia). Thus Moscow wants to avoid new incident with participation of Russian and Turkish airplanes.

THE KREMLIN WANTS TO AVOID NEW INCIDENTS WITH PARTICIPATION OF AIRPLANES OF THE AIRSPACE FORCES AND TURKEY IN THE SKY ABOVE SYRIA

The Defense Ministry of Russia turned to Turkey with a request to provide additional information about use of aviation in the course of the ground operation against ISIS (activity of the organization is prohibited in Russia). Thus Moscow wants to avoid new incident with participation of Russian and Turkish airplanes.

The source reported:

– The Defense Ministry asked the Turkish Defense Ministry for information about plans of the air campaign in the sky of Syria to avoid air incidents because Turkish military airplanes will strike on targets in Syria intensively for the first time and may encounter Russian combat airplanes in the air.

According to Western mass media, in the course of Euphrates Shield operation Turkish airplanes bombed ISIS targets on a significant territory from the Turkish-Syrian border up to Aleppo.

Turkish agency Anadolu reported that on August 24 alone not less than 12 aviation strikes were delivered in the interests of the forces attacking Jarabulus.

Interesting, Turks started a ground operation in Syria as a member of the “Western” anti-ISIS coalition created under the US aegis and according to Pentagon American airplanes and drones also delivered strikes for support of the operation of the Turkish forces.

Such a big intensity of combat work of air forces of various countries in a fairly limited space is fraught with incidents. Thus, initiative of the Russian Defense Ministry is quite explainable.

At the beginning of the month, the Turkish party hinted that it would like to arrange exchange of information. On August 11, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu announced that Ankara was interested in “coordination” of operations against ISIS with Russia but emphasized that this did not mean conduction of joint operations.

Researcher of the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences Alexander Vasilyev, one of the authors of the book entitled “Turkish military machine: strength and weakness” presumes that the Turkish party has an obviously expressed wish to minimize the risk of clashes:

– The mere fact that Turkey notified Russia about the operation in Jarabulus beforehand manifests that Ankara has drawn conclusions from the situation after the death of Russian Su-24.

With regard to possible coordination of actions of Turkish military and Russian Airspace Forces, the expert remarks that strategic tasks of Moscow and Ankara differ.

Vasilyev explains:

– For the Turks the main goal is struggle against the Kurds but ISIS has become a serious threat lately too. Turkish authorities looked through the fingers at activeness of ISIS In the border areas for a long time because this group fought against the Kurds. However, a group of the people sympathizing with ISIS started forming in Turkey afterwards and the authorities understood the entire danger of the situation.

 

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