On October 23rd, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu held talks with the commander of the Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) Mazloum Abdi.
They discussed the implementation of activities under the memorandum concluded by the heads of Russia and Turkey in Sochi. Abdi expressed gratitude to the Russian leader Vladimir Putin for the safety of the Kurdish formations and for contributing to a peaceful settlement of the difficult Kurdish-Turkish issue.
Notably, Abdi, as typical for people who are in absolutely no position of power and are simply following the strong of the day – he was sitting in front of a Russian and a Syrian flag, there was no US flag in sight, let alone an SDF one.
The Russian Ministry of Defense released a statement saying what transpired during the video conference.
“The head of the Russian military department told Mazloum Abdi of the plans to expand patrol routes in the coming days and increase the number of units of the Russian military police in the Syrian-Turkish border,” the statement said.
Shoigu emphasized that civilians living in a 30-kilometer strip from the Syrian-Turkish border do not need to leave their homes, the military police units of the Russian Federation and the Syrian border guards will serve as a guarantee of their safety.
“Currently, units of the Russian military police and regular Syrian troops are deployed in many areas. We give them all kinds of help and support,” the statement cited Mazloum Abdi as saying.
On October 23rd, the first patrol of the Russian Armed Forces and the Syrian Arab Army took place.
“On October 23, 2019, at 12 noon, a convoy of Russian military police crossed the Euphrates River and advanced towards the Syrian-Turkish border,” the Russian Defense Ministry said.
On the way to the convoy, residents of Syrian settlements welcomed the Russian military police, noted in the Ministry of Defense.
“In the village of Kobani, Russian military police held a meeting with the leadership of the local administration, at which they discussed the implementation of the memorandum,” added the defense ministry.
It does appear that Russia and the Syrian government are assisting the SDF, but it is rather simply protecting the civilians. In addition Russia wishes to ensure that no ISIS, or other, terrorists make their way further north towards the CIS countries where they may cause chaos in its “backyard.”
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