The Syrian War, launched by the U.S. and the Arab League in 2011 to overthrow the government of Bashar al-Assad, escalated on a new front last week after Turkey retaliated for the killing of seven Turkish soldiers by Syrian forces.
Turkey, which has illegally invaded Syria, responded by launching a major offensive led by F-16 jets targeting 50 Syrian locations that killed over 70 Syrian soldiers.
Following the attack, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan warned Russia, which has been backing the Syrian government, stating, “It should be out of discussion to block us… It is not possible for us to keep silent.”
In September 2018, Turkey and Russia agreed to turn the northwest area, specifically the capital city Idlib, into a de-escalation zone.
But, since then, there have been over 1,800 civilians killed and hundreds of thousands have fled as Syrian and Russian forces launched a major military initiative to destroy al Qaeda forces controlling the region… many seeking refuge across the border into Turkey.
Last Saturday, Erdoğan doubled down on his warning to Russia: “In the event of a new attack, the proper response will be given in the strongest manner based on the right of self-defense.”
Yesterday, it was reported the Turkish military killed 101 Syrian troops in retaliation for five Turkish soldiers who were killed fighting the Syrian military in Taftanaz, a town Syria is trying to reclaim from rebel forces.
TRENDPOST: While Turkey and Russia are reported to have close relations, including an agreement last December for Turkey to purchase billions of dollars of Russian military equipment, the intensifying conflict in the Syrian civil war has put them at odds.
To add to the tension, as reported in last week’s Trends Journal, Russia and Turkey are on opposite sides of the Libyan crisis, with Russia backing the rebel militia leader Khalifa Haftar and Turkey supporting the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA). 
Where is heading? What’s next?  
We forecast worsening relations between Turkey, which has supported the overthrow of Syrian President Assad, and Assad’s Russian and Iranian allies. 
And, as noted, Turkey has illegally invaded and occupied regions of a sovereign nation in violation of international law, a fact that is not reported in the mainstream media nor condemned by the political establishment. 

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