Report slams Turkey’s Syria policy
“Turkey must stop betting its reputation on a quick resolution of the Syria crisis," the International Crisis Group report says. AFP PhotoTurkey has struggled to find the right response to the Syrian civil war and must stop betting its reputation on a quick resolution of the crisis, a report by the International Crisis Group has said.
The report titled, “Blurring the Borders: Syrian Spillover Risks for Turkey,” said the conflict symbolizes how Turkey’s “zero problems” policy has developed into “multiple problems,” while also praising Ankara’s “generous” efforts in coping with the Syrian refugees.
“Turkey does not have the capacity to solve the intractable problems inside Syria alone, and is not considering significant military intervention. Increased arming of opposition fighters seems unlikely to enable them to topple the regime quickly. Turkey’s wishful thinking about the Ottoman past and taking a leading historical and economic role in its Sunni Muslim neighborhood is at odds with the present reality that it now has an uncontrollable, fractured, radicalized no-man’s-land on its doorstep,” the report said.
“Turkey must stop betting its reputation on a quick resolution of the Syria crisis, and make some long-term changes of emphasis. In order to talk to all parties from a position of greater moral authority, it should avoid projecting the image of being a Sunni Muslim hegemon,” it added.
The report also urges Turkey to re-secure its border and ask Syrian opposition fighters to move to Syria. “Publicly adopting a profile of a balanced regional power, rather than a Sunni Muslim one, would likewise do much to reduce any possibility that the sectarian polarisation that is crippling Syria will jump the border to Turkey, in particular to Hatay province,” it said.