Moscow Warns Turkey to Limit Syria Offensive
By Jamie Dettmer |
MOSCOW – Russians officials urged Turkey to limit the duration and scale of its cross-border military incursion into northeast Syria, stressing Turkish troops must at all costs avoid clashing with Syrian government forces, which have moved north and are racing to take over Kurdish border towns ahead of the Turks.
The Kremlin’s special envoy to Syria Tuesday appeared to toughen Russia’s language about the offensive, dubbing it for the first time as “unacceptable.” Previously the Kremlin appeared to endorse the incursion, with top aides to Russian President Vladimir Putin saying Russia would go along with Turkey as it acknowledged Ankara had legitimate border security concerns.
But Russian officials had from the start detailed red lines — including that the offensive wouldn’t lead to any permanent Turkish occupation.