NUR-SULTAN, June 16. /TASS/. Moscow urged Turkey to give up the idea of conducting a military operation in Syria’s north and will continue to do so, Special Russian Presidential Representative for Syria Alexander Lavrentyev said at a press conference on Thursday.
"A final decision on the operation has not been made yet and, therefore, we called on our Turkish partners and are urging them to refrain from such military actions on Syrian soil," the Russian envoy told the press conference, following the results of the 18th international Astana format meeting on Syria.
"We told our Turkish friends in earnest that this might further escalate the situation and, in particular, lead to an armed confrontation. This may encourage separatist sentiments of the so-called Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria, in which neither Turkey, nor Russia, nor Iraq, nor Iran is interested," Lavrentyev emphasized.
Moscow still sees opportunities to find other solutions to ongoing problems, among them the cessation of continued shelling attacks, including those against the territory of Turkey, which Moscow denounces, the envoy pointed out.
"Work must be maintained by all the sides. Some solution to this problem, must be found without resorting to military methods," the Russian special presidential representative stressed, adding that the presence of US troops in Syria’s northeast had a substantial impact.
Turkey’s looming military operation in Syria’s north would fail to fully resolve its national security issues, Lavrentyev pointed out.
"We believe and frankly pointed out that the military operation would not resolve all those problems that exist today and, primarily, it would not fully resolve the problem of Turkey’s national security. It seems to me that Turkey’s national security problems can be resolved only if the Syrian government forces take full control of the borders of the territories.
Unfortunately, we are not seeing this and basically the Kurdish self-defense forces are, indeed, present there so far," the envoy said.