What are Türkiye's motives for launching a new military operation in northern Syria?

What are Türkiye's motives for launching a new military operation in northern Syria?

What are Türkiye's motives for launching a new military operation in northern Syria?

During a speech he at the Presidential Complex on May 23, Türkiye's President, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said his country will start taking new measures pertinent to resuming efforts Türkiye started earlier aiming at creating a 30-kilometer (18.6-mile) wide safe zone along its southern border.
“The main target of these operations will be areas that are centers of attacks on our country and safe zones,” Erdoğan added; therefore, the military operations are supposed to target the areas of Ain al-Arab, Tal Rifaat, Ain Issa and Manbij, given that these attacks have been launched from these areas.
This comes at a time when the YDG-H (Patriotic Revolutionary Youth Movement), the Afrin Liberation Forces of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) as well as the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have intensified targeting areas north of Aleppo and some areas of southern Türkiye since the second half of 2022.
Türkiye has several motives to launch a new military operation in northern Syria related either to the Syrian issue itself or to international considerations. Internationally, Türkiye attempts to put pressure on the United States after the former objected to Sweden and Finland's application for NATO membership. Ankara seeks to bargain over the NATO enlargement in order to be rewarded by Washington in return for providing its approval; because such an approval will negatively affect Türkiye's relationship with Russia, which may in turn cause political and economic losses for the latter.
Türkiye is aware that the international circumstances resulting from Russia's invasion of Ukraine allow it to renegotiate for up-to-dated understandings with all parties regarding Syria and other issues. Türkiye would; therefore, work on consolidating and expanding its gains, in a way that can bring an important political return a year ahead of the 2023 presidential elections, which are considered the most important event in the contemporary history of Türkiye.
At the Syrian level, Türkiye theoretically has - political and  security goals, regardless of whether they are practically  achieveable or not. The most important of which are:

• To support the plan for refugees’ repatriation: Removing the "SDF" from the cities of Tal Rifaat, Manbij and Ain al-Arab actually encourages the voluntary return of tens of thousands of refugees to their home. This echoes previous military operations that contributed to the voluntary return of 500,000 refugees.
• Türkiye's desire to eliminate security threats that endanger its military positions in Syria and prevent Türkiye from resuming its operations to impose stability in the areas of its military presence.
• Blocking any chance to establish a secessionist region in northern Syria and complementing the efforts to protect the Turkish national security by neutralizing the PKK threat from Türkiye’s southern border, which still poses a threat despite the joint air operations and patrols carried out. All that is underway in light of the United States and Russia’s failure to abide by pledges they gave to Türkiye in this regard.
• Putting extra military pressure on the PKK in the region in general. Furthermore; launching a new military operation against this group in Syria will further drain its capabilities and resources. The above efforts come in line with the continuation of the "claw-lock" operation launched by Türkiye against the PKK in Iraq since April 2022, with the aim of establishing a buffer zone on the border strip.

Share this Post

Why did Emirati FM again fly to Damascus?
In focus

An Emirati delegation headed by the United Arab Emirates foreign minister, Abdullah bin Zayed Al Al Nahyan on January 4, 2023 made a visit to the Syrian capital, Damascus, and met the head of the Syrian regime, Bashar al -Assad. This visit is the second to Syria after the return of diplomatic relations between the two parties late 2018.

Syria during 2022
Analytical Report

An analytical report released by the Jusoor Center for Studies monitors the various stages that the Syrian issue went through during 2022, politically, militarily and economically. The report addresses the political process, the movements of the Astana track, the UN Security Council meetings on Syria, the policies of international actors, and others.

The Israeli strikes in Syria during 2022

In 2013, Israel started launching air strikes on Syria, which fall within the strategy of the "Campaign between Wars (CBW)"; where it considers it necessary to weaken the capabilities of the enemy (Iran and its militias or military units) and respond to threats outside the borders.

Russia and restructuring the Syrian regime forces: Obstacles and alternatives

The Syrian regime attached great importance to the army. It took the slogan “No sound is louder than the battle's one” as an instrument for harnessing all the material and human capabilities to serve the effectiveness of the army's operations in order to maintain its control over the country's areas. The regime also works hard to take advantage of the above-mentioned slogan to serve its regional a