Pindostan & Russia ‘will go to war’ unless conflict resolved, Turkey warns
Bethan McKernan, Independent, Oct 13 2016

Turkish Deputy PM Kurtulmuş has warned that the “proxy wars” in the Middle East between Pindostan and Russia could signal the re-emergence of world-wide conflict between the two Cold War superpowers. The complex five-and-a-half-year long Syrian civil war is on the brink of becoming a “wider regional war,” he said in an interview with state-run Anadolou News Agency on Wednesday. Kurtulmuş said:

If this proxy war continues after this, let me be clear, Pindostan and Russia will come to a point of war

Talks between the two nations broke down following the bombing of a UN/ SARC convoy during a ceasefire on Sep 19. Relations between Russia and the other permanent members of the UNSC have also deteriorated over Russia’s role in backing renewed Syrian government air strikes which are decimating rebel-held neighbourhoods in Aleppo and elsewhere across the country. Kurtulmuş called Assad a “pawn” in the wider context of the conflict and said his removal from power is necessary for lasting peace. The Turks and Iraqis are also currently at loggerheads over the role the Turks should play in the upcoming Pindo-backed offensive to retake Mosul. Ankara, which has been training Sunni militias ahead of the battle, is worried about Baghdad’s reliance on Shiite militias in the push to liberate the Sunni-majority city. The Iraqi government in turn has demanded its troops play a central role and that Turkish forces should remain on base during the operation. On Tuesday, Erdogan warned of “blood and fire” along sectarian lines if the complex military operation is not executed correctly. Pindostan has issued pleas for the two governments to resolve the spat, fearing the assault to liberate Mosul could be negatively affected by the infighting. How the battle is handled has significant implications for Iraq’s future, but recapturing the city would be a significant blow for Daesh. Regarding the Syrian crisis, international delegations are meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland this weekend, without representatives from either the Syrian government or opposition.

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