Thursday 22 June 2017

Détente between Russia and Turkey's proxies in Syria?

Turkish troops carry the coffin of a soldier accidentally killed in a Russian airstrike around the northern Syrian town of al-Bab. Photo Eyyup Burun/AP
Turkish troops carry the coffin of a soldier accidentally killed in a Russian airstrike around the northern Syrian town of al-Bab. Photo Eyyup Burun/AP
Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

In my previous letters on the Battle of al-Bab (Irish Independent, February 8 and 11), I made reference to Hezbollah assisting the Syrian government's offensive against Isil, citing the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reports.

However, pro-government sources have been quick to refute these SOHR reports of Hezbollah's involvement, such as journalist Yusha Yuseef of Al Masdar News, who tweeted recently that only the Syrian army, particularly the special forces unit Tiger Forces, backed by the Russian air force, is battling in al-Bab.

This alleged lack of Hezbollah involvement at al-Bab might be an effort to avoid endangering good Iran-Turkey relations, in case the Lebanese Shia militia might clash with Turkish troops and Sunni Islamist rebels.

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