MESOP NEWS INSIDER : Situation in northern Syria will likely escalate – Russian foreign ministry

27 May 2017 – The situation in northern Syria is very likely to escalate in the near future, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Thursday.  It is very likely that the situation in northern Syria could escalate in the near future given the current tensions between Turkey and Kurdish military groups, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Thursday.

“Given Ankara’s threats of starting a new operation against the Syrian Democratic Forces, regular clashes between the Kurds and pro-Turkish illegal armed formations the probability of escalation in northern Syria remains high,” Zakharova told a briefing.

Zakharova pointed out that Russia has seen positive dynamics in the development of the Syrian situation. This improvement, according to the spokeswoman, has direct links to the memorandum on creation of the safe zones across the Middle Eastern nation, a document which came into force earlier this month, Sputnik news agency reported.

Turkish media reported Saturday that Turkey was planning new operations against Kurdish armed groups in both Syria and Iraq. The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) is an alliance of Kurdish and Arab militias that was formed in 2015, and that strives to liberate Northern Syria, particularly the city of Raqqa. Russia, Turkey and Iran signed a memorandum on the establishment of four safe zones in Syria on May 6 as part of the Astana talks on Syrian settlement.

Reporter’s code: 50101