Turkey is deploying military equipment to one of the settlements of the Syrian province of Raqqa, Rear Admiral Alexander Karpov, deputy head of the Russian Center for the Reconciliation of Warring Parties in Syria, revealed on March 15.
“The Russian side is extremely concerned by the deployment of military equipment of the Turkish Armed Forces and the carrying out of fortification works at strong points in the area of Ain Isa settlement of Raqqa province,” Karpov said.
The Russian Center called these actions a violation of the status quo established by the Memorandum of Understanding, noting that they “undermine the efforts of both sides in resolving the Syrian conflict.”
These developments came as the Turkish Defense Ministry released an official statement in defense of militant groups involved in illegal oil smuggling of Syrian oil to Turkey. Over the past months, oil smuggling infrastructure in the Turkish-occupied part of Syria has been repeated pounded by air, artillery and rocket strikes that caused major damage to it.
This trend undermines Turkish attempts to solidify its control over the occupied areas as the looting of captured territories is the only source of ‘self-financing’ of its proxies.
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