Russian Envoy in Tehran discusses Yemen and Syria latest developments. Russian President’s Special Envoy Alexander Lavrentiev, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Vershinin and accompanying delegation held talks.
As per IRNA report, the Russian delegation talks focussed on Syria and Yemen.
Russian Envoy in Tehran
Iranian Foreign Minister’s Senior Assistant for Special Political Affairs Ali Asghar Khaji spoke to them late on Wednesday. Notably, the meeting dealt with the latest developments in Syria, especially northeastern Syria and Turkey’s military action in the area.
Both sides stressed the need for maintaining unity, territorial integrity and sovereignty of Syria.
They also called for stopping military actions immediately and settlement of differences through diplomacy.
The officials also reviewed the situation in Yemen and developments surrounding Astana Process and establishment of Constitution Committee.
Furthermore, thery stressedthe need for Syrian people decide their own future away from any foreign interference.
Syrian troops enter Manbij and Raqqah
Turkish aggression led the Kurds to reach out to the Damascus government.
However, it enabled Syrian troops to retake towns near the border with Turkey under bilateral agreement with Kurds. Moreover, Ikhbariya state TV reported that Syrian government troops have deployed inside Manbij in Aleppo Province.
Meanwhile, it also showed Manbij residents celebrating the arrival of Syrian forces.
Kurds resist invasion near Ras al-Ain
The so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights also issued a statement. Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), an alliance of mainly Kurdish militants, put up stiff resistance around Ras al-Ain Hasaka Province.
The tUK-based group said that SDF launched a major counterattack overnight against Turkish forces and their proxies. However, they managed to hold off Turkish efforts to seize the city due to “fortifications, tunnel networks and a continuous supply of reinforcements.”
Kurds report halt in foreign aid
The self-proclaimed Kurdish authority complained that the Turkish invasion forced all international humanitarian organizations out of the region.
“The humanitarian plight of the displaced in areas targeted by the aggression has worsened. Because all humanitarian aid being cut and all international organizations ceasing their activities,” it said in a statement.
The Kurdish authority also estimated that the Turkish campaign has displaced more than 275,000 people, including over 70,000 children.
Qatar takes Turkey’s side
Qatar defended Turkey’s Syria operation, saying Ankara had only acted against a threat.
Speaking at a Global Security Forum meeting in Doha, Qatar’s Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al Thani defended Ankara.
Surprisingly, he claimed Turkey had been forced to respond to an “imminent threat for Turkish security.” “We can’t put all the blame on Turkey.”
“In the beginning (Turkey) said ‘don’t support these groups,’” he said, referring to US-backed YPG militants.
But, nobody listened. They tried to solve this issue now for more than a year with the United States. Qatari FM said that they aimed at creating safe zone to get the threat away from their border.”
“(Turkey) couldn’t reach any solution with the US, they couldn’t handle this threat until it became explosive for them,” the top Qatari diplomat added.
UN demands probe into executions
The UN human rights office said Turkey could be “deemed responsible” for summary executions by an affiliated militant outfit of several Kurdish militants and a politician in Syria.
Speaking at a briefing in Geneva, UN human rights spokesman Rupert Colville referred to footage of the killings, apparently carried out by Turkey-backed Ahrar al-Sharqiya militants near Manbij.
“Turkey could be deemed as a state responsible for violations by their affiliated groups as long as Turkey exercises effective control of these groups or the operations in the course of which those violations occurred,” Colville said. “We urge Turkish authorities immediately to launch an impartial, transparent and independent investigation.”
Stop Syria incursion: China to Turkey
Meanwhile, China urged Turkey to stop its military action and respect Syria’s sovereignty.
Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang warned that the operation “may result in terrorists fleeing out” and the Daesh terrorist group “to stage a comeback.”
“The sovereignty, independence, unification, and territorial integrity of Syria should be respected and upheld,” Geng said. “We call on Turkey to stop military action, and return to the correct way of political resolution.”
Turkey vows to continue operation until ‘objectives achieved’
Meanwhile, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan emphasized that the Syria operation would not stop until having achieved objectives.
“God willing, we will quickly secure the region stretching from Manbij to our border with Iraq and ensure that, in the first stage, one million, and then two million Syrian refugees return to their homes of their own free will,” Erdogan said in a televised speech in Baku.
He further said that 1,000 square-kilometers of Syrian territory had so far been “liberated from the separatist terrorist organization.”
Shiite News Monitoring Desk