Monday, 14 October, 2019

Europe 'lacks leverage' over Turkey amid Erdogan migrant threat

Shelling near Akcakale Sanliurfa inside Syria taken from the Turkish side of the border on Thursday morning Shelling near Akcakale Sanliurfa inside Syria taken from the Turkish side of the border on Thursday morning. Credit Lefteris Pitarakis AP
Steven Clarke | 11 October, 2019, 22:40

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan's communications director said that U.S. President Donald Trump, in a Sunday phone call which appeared to pave the way for Turkey's offensive, agreed "to transfer the leadership of the counter-Islamic State campaign to Turkey".

Some 64,000 people have already reportedly fled their homes, the International Rescue Committee aid organisation said.

UNHCR said after eight years of conflict, Syria remains the largest refugee crisis in the world, with 5.6 million Syrians living as refugees.

U.S. Ambassador Kelly Craft said Trump "has made abundantly clear" that the United States "has not in any way" endorsed Turkey's decision to mount a military incursion in northeast Syria.

The Syrian Kurdish militia was a U.S. ally in the campaign that brought down the Islamic State group in Syria.

"Calculate it: A bus carries about 50 passengers".

But while European leaders are "no doubt outraged" by Turkey's actions - including the attendant prospects of forced repatriation to so-called safe zones and the risk of jihadist prisoners escaping - they still "lack the political will" to take "any meaningful action", Waldman said.

"These people have children in school, sick people in hospitals, jobs, some are married to Turkish nationals". He accused German Chancellor Angela Merkel of using "Nazi measures" when Germany stopped some Turkish ministers from campaigning there for a 2017 referendum, and he barred the Dutch ambassador from returning to the country after the Netherlands enacted similar measures the same year.

The SDF now holds most of the territory that once made up Islamic State's "caliphate" in Syria, and has been keeping thousands of Islamic State fighters in jail and tens of thousands of their family members in camps.

The violence was wreaking havoc across northeast Syria.

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Chow says anyone who's had Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS, a severe paralyzing illness), may not want to get the shot. The CDC surveyed almost 2,100 women ages 18 to 49 who were pregnant any time between August 2018 and April 2019.

Cavusoglu has said the military intends to move 30 kilometers (19 miles) into northern Syria and that its operation will last until all "terrorists are neutralized".

"Even if Turkey manages to control the region, there will be spillovers, perhaps suicide attacks and it won't be a comfortable zone", refugee expert Metin Corabatir told Al-Monitor. "This would be a project that would require billions of dollars of support for infrastructure, security, and housing".

The withdrawal was implemented the next day, effectively clearing the way for Turkey's offensive.

Erdogan has accused the EU of failing to fully honor a 6 billion-euro ($6.6 billion) funding deal reached in 2016 to stop migrants from traveling westward to the Greek islands and European mainland.

Ankara insists, despite worldwide fears to the contrary, that there will be no let-up in the campaign.

On Thursday he warned the European Union that the alternative was to allow the refugees to head to its shores instead. "Come to your senses".

'This is insanity. I don't know what they call atrocities, but they are happening'.

It's a threat likely to have an impact, says Janroj Yilmaz Keles, senior research fellow in Politics at Middlesex University in London.

Kurds said they were resisting the assault.

While I am cancelling this appearance, together with Turkish friends, colleagues and comrades we are planning a visit to Istanbul, and a series of meetings, that will give us an opportunity to promote the progressive internationalism that our countries, our peoples and our democracies so desperately need. Erdogan's plans, on the other hand, involve establishing new settlements for vast numbers of refugees who fled their hometowns in Aleppo, Idlib and other parts of Syria.

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