The Foreign Affairs Committee, an influential members of Parliament (MPs) committee in Britain, voiced its disdain with Prime Minister David Cameron over his ‘turning a blind eye’ to Turkey and its strong-arm tactics to suppress the Kurds at home and in neighboring countries.
The committee stressed the importance that in order to win this fight against the Islamic State, dialogue with Russia needs to improve if they’re to be defeated in Syria. The committee described Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s domestic repression of Kurds as “shameful.” The cross-party panel of MPs also called on Cameron to prioritize the fight against [Islamic State] over a political deal that would see Syrian President Bashar al-Assad step down to be replaced by a transition government.
The committee’s report comes two days after [Islamic State] launched yet another terrorist attack in a European capital, this time targeting a metro station and airport in Brussels, killing at least 34 people. The British government was also sharply criticized for turning a “blind eye” to Turkish repression in order to secure Ankara’s cooperation on EU migration policies. The report said:
“President Erdogan’s increasingly shameful domestic priorities and repressive policies have driven the PYD (Syria’s main Kurdish party/grouping) and its associated YPG militia into the arms of the Syrian regime and Russia. Since Syrian Kurdish forces have proved effective allies in the fight against [Islamic State], this is working directly against shared international priorities. In the short term it is imperative that the Cessation of Hostilities be maintained, and that all parties arrive at a preliminary political accord, so they can then focus their attention on the fight against [Islamic State].”
The committee said the UK government should pressure Turkey to stop attacking the YPG militia, and persuade the Syrian government and opposition to unite in defeating IS, and not wait until a transition deal is struck to replace Assad.
With pressure mounting on Turkey to cease its attacks on the Kurds, do you think President Erdogan will listen to reason or continue the onslaught? Sound off in the comments below!