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Turkey refuses ceasefire talks with Kurds, risks mass ISIS escape

“Nobody can stop us until we reach 30 to 35 kilometres” (19 to 22 miles) inside Syria, he said.
Ali Taghva Montreal, QC

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has refused Donald Trump’s offer to mediate a ceasefire that would stop Turkey’s advance into North-Eastern Syria.

“Nobody can stop us until we reach 30 to 35 kilometres (19 to 22 miles) inside Syria,” he said.

Currently, dozens of civilians alongside hundreds of soldiers have reportedly been killed in Turkey’s offensive to create a “safe-zone” within North-Eastern Syria, with another 160,000 being displaced.

While the attack against the Kurds are worrying, the regional implications could be even more devastating.

For example, the Kurds manage the al-Hol camp, an area home to roughly 70,000 individuals, of which 30,000 still swear fealty to the Islamic State.

al-Hol camp, Photo: Unicef

Already there are reports of ISIS re-organizing in preparation as al-Hol camp guards continue to receive fewer and fewer resources in the face of Turkish assaults.

In response to the growing chaos in the region, it appears some nations are beginning to act in a limited fashion.

According to the National Post, Global Affairs Canada has confirmed that Canada has “temporarily” suspended new arms export to Turkey.

“This unilateral action risks undermining the stability of an already fragile region, exacerbating the humanitarian situation and rolling back progress achieved by the Global Coalition Against Daesh, of which Turkey is a member,” said spokesman Guillaume Berube.

“We call for the protection of civilians and on all parties to respect their obligations under international law, including unhindered access for humanitarian aid.”

Britan, Germany, and France have also suspended arms sales, while the United States has initiated sanctions targetting the Turkish economy.

While sanctions are sure to hurt the Turkish economy, the willingness for Kurdish allies such as the United States to rapidly withdraw support is sure to further destabilize the region, as fewer countries rely on American promises and even fewer potentially fear American arms.

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Ali Taghva
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