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APRIL 2021

Turkish Efforts To Seize Northern Syria

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Turkish Efforts To Seize Northern Syria

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Submitted by Khaled Iskef.

The recent events in the Syrian north show the clear Turkish intention to seize the lands of northern Syria and annex them to the Turkish state, similar to what happened in the Syrian Iskenderun sanjak occupied by it since 1939.

Throughout the years of its intervention in the Syrian war, Turkey relies on following a clear Turkish policy in the areas under its control and the control of the affiliated armed factions, starting with imposing its currency and curriculum, and circulating the issuance of the “local councils” decisions in the Turkish language, giving Turkish names to the streets of cities, villages and towns under its control, forcing the people to contract with the Turkish companies for various services.

Sources reported a new aspect of the Turkish trend to consolidate its presence on the Syrian territories under control, which has been witnessed recently in these areas in terms of massive military movements aimed at establishing illegal military bases and observation points, the abundance of which has become evident.

The sources believe that those Turkish reinforcements and the densely increasing deployment in northern Syria have a direct purpose, which is the military confrontation.

Noting the imbalance between the proportion of these military buildups and the relatively weak military operations, another aspect emerges, which is the mobilization and stabilization of military force in preparation of announcing the annexation of northern Syria to Turkey, and to counter the reaction of the Syrian state on this matter.

Over the past months, the successive withdrawal of the illegal Turkish observation points was observed in the countrysides of Aleppo, Hama, and Idlib, in a similar way to the regrouping of the forces that were trapped in the areas that the Syrian state regained control over, in return for the clear increase in the number of observation points in the areas controlled by the militants in Idlib and the northern countryside of Aleppo.

The matter isn’t limited to the observation points, but also includes the illegal bases that were set up, noting that the last bases are currently being established on in the “Jarablus” area in the countryside of Aleppo.

As for the internal living conditions in the areas under Turkish control, examples of the Turkification policy abound there, in continuous attempts to change the demographic nature and wipe out the Syrian culture and civilization. Afrin is an illustrative example.

Since its control on Afrin was imposed, Turkey has followed an approach based on the expulsion of the indigenous population and the settlement of the armed men affiliated with Ankara in their place, with a continuous pursuit of every party opposing it, in conjunction with imposing its own laws on the people dealing in the Syrian pound and introducing Turkish companies into the market, opening schools with a Turkish educational system etc.

The Turkish method has also developed in the countryside of Aleppo to the point of opening universities and institutes affiliated with the Turkish universities, the last of which was opened a month ago for a faculty of human medicine in the town of Al-Rai, in which a higher institute for health sciences had also been opened, in addition to opening 3 other colleges in 2019 such as the College of Education in Afrin, the College of Administrative and Economic Sciences in Al-Bab, and the College of Islamic Sciences in Azaz.

It’s noteworthy that the Turkish policy pursued in northern Syria isn’t limited to the aspects mentioned above but also affects various other aspects of living. The locals are forced to contract with Turkish electricity and water companies, while only Turkish goods are allowed to be traded, in addition to monetary dealings limited to Turkish lira, and the creation of “local councils”, where the decision is made by Turks according to their interests and in order to achieve their goal of wiping out the Syrian character from those areas.

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