Turkish President Warns Of Humanitarian Disaster In Idlib

Humanitarian crisis worsens in Syria as crippling assault on Idlib continues

Idlib assault would lead to risks for Europe - Erdogan

Damascus, backed by Iran and Russian Federation, is preparing a major offensive on Idlib and other areas of northwest Syria to bring them under regime control.

Almost half of Idlib's population of 2.9 million people had gone there to seek refuge from conflict elsewhere in Syria, including nearly 1 million children.

Russia, Iran and Turkey held a summit in Tehran last week to discuss the Assad regime's reported plan to use military force to restore Damascus' control over Idlib, where three million people live.

Yesterday, the United Nations warned that a large-scale military operation against Idlib could create "the worst humanitarian catastrophe with the biggest loss of life in the 21st century".

"We are saying the situation in Idlib should be settled most preferably in a peaceful way".

Russian ambassador to the United Nations Vassily Nebenzia argued at the same Security Council meeting that there is a need to fight terrorists in Idlib. If (Syrian President Bashar) Assad, Russia, and Iran continue down the path they are on, the consequences will be dire.

The Turkish president also criticized Assad's attempt of trying to legitimize an attack as counter-terrorism efforts. "But fighting terrorism does not absolve warring parties of their core obligations under worldwide law", said Guterres.

But there is a further obstacle; the strip of land between Turkey-controlled Afrin and Idlib is controlled by Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), a former al-Qaeda affiliate.

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"These are people who can not be integrated into Syria really, under any circumstances, who have nowhere to go and who may just be ready to die in any case", says Sam Heller, a senior analyst at the International Crisis Group.

Turkey now hosts almost 3.5 million Syrian refugees, more than any other country in the world. The terrorist organization is controlling almost 60% of Idlib, the place where anti-Assad organisations deployed.

Complicating matters, the Turkish armed forces also have several outposts in Idlib in support of rebel groups.

"This is what we should be discussing today, Madam President, but I think it has been absent from the briefing we received from Russian Federation just now", Pierce added. "Around four weeks ago, we knew that British intelligence was working towards a chemical attack in order to blame the Syrian government, to hold Syria responsible", Mr Black said on Al Mayadeen, an Arab news channel based in Beirut.

Previously in the campaign to reclaim eastern Ghouta, it signed a UN Security Council resolution calling for an immediate halt to fighting, a declaration it immediately disregarded in favour of its own orchestrated "humanitarian pauses" and nightly bombardment.

Ibrahim Kalin's remarks came after a cabinet meeting chaired by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the presidential complex.

The Russian defence ministry, citing Idlib residents, said film crews from several Middle Eastern TV channels - as well as "a regional branch of a leading U.S. news channel" - had arrived for the shoot in the city of Jisr Al Shughur in Idlib.

Russian disinformation has always been a key component of its intervention in Syria, which was critical in turning the tide of the war in Assad's favour. "No matter what type of weapons or methods are used, the United States strongly opposes any escalation of violence in Idlib".

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