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Turkey disappointed with military gains in Syria: Analyst

A mortar shell sits in the center of the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobani, near the border zith Turkey, on January 28, 2015. (©AFP)

Press TV has conducted an interview with Fred Weir, a journalist and political commentator from Moscow, on the reports, which say Russia accused Turkey of shelling a village in Syria.

The following is a rough transcription of the interview.

Press TV: We’re looking at an accusation by Turkey onto Russia and of course then Russia regarding the shelling by Turkey of a village. Do you think that when there’s gains made by Russia that Turkey comes out and makes an accusation? Can there be a connection there?

Weir: Well, first of all it’s impossible to know the truth that’s all that. We don’t know whether Russian plane actually did violate Turkish airspace again or whether the Turks did shell that village.

This is a war of words, which clearly is the surface for us very very deep antagonism between these two over what’s happening in Syria. So, yes I think, Turkey is extremely disappointed about the gains that the Syrian army is making with Russian air support.

I think it was kind of believed in Ankara that Assad would be overthrown and replaced by a regime that would be more Sunni-dominated regime that would be more Turkey-friendly. I think that there’s enormous amount of antagonism there.

So, we have to see all this in that context and it’s not just about whether or not a Russian plane briefly penetrated Turkish airspace. These things do happen all the time.

Supersonic planes in the Baltic area for instance and other places, they go up, they shave other people’s borders. It doesn’t usually become a great big incident, if it’s just a real brief incursion, people file complaints on that’s the end of it.

This is becoming a huge headline-grabbing event for other reasons and those reasons are political.

Press TV: Well, the problem is this, there’s confusion when it comes to such a headline, because one is to wonder whether it’s Turkey making that statement or it is NATO making that statement or maybe combination of both, what do you think?

Weir: I think it’s Turkey. I think Turkey really wants to get more solidarity from NATO, I think, when they shot down that plane a couple of months ago. That was their idea to create an effect where NATO would rally around Turkey and pressure Russia to get out of Syria or something like that. It didn’t worked then.

A pressure coming from NATO right now is on Turkey do not shoot down any more Russian planes. I don’t think in the West they want that kind of an incident to blow up into a full-scale confrontation between NATO and Russia.

I think, they’ve made that pretty clear. So, I think it is Turkey that is trying to get something started there.




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