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Turkish Newspaper Reveals Details of Russian Meeting with SDF, Assad Regime

The meeting resulted in an agreement preventing Assad's forces from entering the Shahba area in Aleppo.
Turkish Newspaper Reveals Details of Russian Meeting with SDF, Assad Regime

The Turkish newspaper Yeni Safak reported on a recent meeting in Tal Rifaat, Aleppo countryside, involving Russia, the Assad regime, Shiite militias, and the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). 

According to the report published on Tuesday, the meeting resulted in an agreement preventing Assad’s forces from entering the Shahba area in Aleppo. Instead, joint points were established in the area under the control of the militias. 

The Shahba area and Sheikh Maqsoud neighbourhood, both under SDF control, often face sieges by regime checkpoints and occasional clashes with SDF forces. 

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The newspaper outlined that the Russians and SDF reached an understanding wherein the SDF would be provided with information before any infiltration operations against Turkish forces in the area. 

Additionally, it was decided to monitor and report the SDF’s movements in the region to the Russians. However, there hasn’t been any official statement from Russia or the SDF regarding the meeting, as reported by the newspaper. 

Tal Rifaat enclave currently hosts various military forces, including Assad’s forces, the People’s Protection Units (YPG), Russian police, and other forces aligned with Iran-backed militias. 

Turkey views the SDF and its primary component, the YPG, as affiliates of the PKK, considering them terrorists and a threat to its national security. 

In response to recent Turkish bombings, senior PKK officials have implemented precautionary measures, such as reducing personnel at headquarters and checkpoints, frequently changing their locations, and keeping commanders away from the Turkish border unless absolutely necessary. 

Turkey has intensified its airstrikes on northern and eastern Syria in recent weeks, targeting SDF positions, including oil infrastructure such as oil fields, refineries, power plants, weapons depots, military camps, as well as administrative and financial headquarters. 

Targets of Turkish strikes have included the brick factory in Hasakeh, the Odeh oil field in Qahtaniyah, and oil refineries in Kardahul village. 

An analytical article by researchers Muhammad Hassan and Samer al-Ahmad at the Middle East Institute suggests that this strategy aims to cut off the PKK’s funding sources in Syria, which are controlled by the Syrian Democratic Forces.


This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.

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