Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday he feared a U.S.-Russian ceasefire plan would do little more than benefit Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and accused the West, Russia and Iran of only seeking to further their own interests.
The United States and Russia have announced plans for a cessation of hostilities in Syria to take effect starting on Saturday. But rebels backed by Saudi Arabia and Turkey have expressed doubts about the proposal, which excludes attacks by the Syrian army and its Russian backers on the militant groups ISIS and the al-Qaeda-linked Nusra Front.
“The West, the United States, Russia, Iran, the European Union and United Nations have unfortunately not managed to stand tall by the honor of humanity,” Erdogan said in a speech in Ankara broadcast live on television.
“On the contrary, all these countries, because of their own calculations, have permitted, directly or indirectly, the killing of nearly half a million innocent people by the regime and its backers,” he said.
NATO member Turkey has grown increasingly frustrated by the international response to Syria’s five-year-old war, incensed by a Russian intervention which has tipped the balance of power in favor of Ankara’s arch-enemy Assad and by U.S. support for a Kurdish militia it sees as a hostile insurgent force.
If Daesh (ISIS) and Al-Nusra are kept outside the ceasefire, then the PYD-YPG must similarly be excluded from the ceasefire for it is a terrorist group just as they areErdogan