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Turkish Campaign Against ISIS a Cover-up?
Vowing to strike the Islamic State last month Turkey and the United States came to an agreement to allow the U.S. military access to Incirlik airbase in southern Turkey. Using the agreement to reengage in targeting the Kurdish rebels in the region, Turkish officials have said that both the campaign against the Islamic State and ...
Vowing to strike the Islamic State last month Turkey and the United States came to an agreement to allow the U.S. military access to Incirlik airbase in southern Turkey. Using the agreement to reengage in targeting the Kurdish rebels in the region, Turkish officials have said that both the campaign against the Islamic State and the Kurdish rebels are part of the same fight against terrorism in the region.
Debate a 2013 ceasefire agreed upon by the PKK, a violent Kurdish rebel group, and Turkey clashes have resumed and Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Devautoglu has said that the strikes against the PKK will continue until the group surrenders. Leader of the PKK, Cemil Bayik, moves a step further stating that the Turkish strikes against the Kurds prove that “[President] Erdogan is behind IS massacres. His aim is to stop the Kurdish advance against them, thus advancing his aim of Turkishness in Turkey.”
Saudi and Russian Foreign Ministers to meet in Moscow
Saudi and Russian foreign ministers, Adel al-Jubeir and Sergei Lavor, will be meeting to discuss crisis in the Middle East on Tuesday, including the war on Syria, the threat of the Islamic State, and the state of the global energy market. Notwithstanding disagreement during three party talks held in Doha with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, Jubeir will visit Moscow with continued hopes that diplomacy will prevail in ending the war in Syria and steps toward an agreement to jointly fight the Islamic State can be made.
–Al Nusra has captured five of the sixty U.S. trained Syrian rebels since the attack on their compound on Friday.
-An Iranian court held its final hearing on Monday in the Washington Post journalist’s trial who has been detained by Iranian officials for more than a year on charges including espionage.
-Five dead and at least 16 wounded after a car bomb exploded near the airport in Kabul on Monday.
–U.S. consulate in Istanbul comes under attack on Monday during a wave of separate attacks on Turkish security forces killing at lease eight people.
-Pro-government forces in Yemen are reported to have retaken the city of Zinjibar from the Houthi rebels.
Arguments and Analysis
“Yemen: Houthis Abduct Rights Activist” (Human Rights Watch)
“Houthi authorities should immediately release Abd al-Kader al-Guneid, a medical doctor and human rights activist critical of the Houthis. The Houthis, also known as Ansar Allah, forcibly took him from his home in the city of Taizz on August 5, 2015, and have yet to respond to inquiries from his family about his whereabouts or why they are holding him.”
“Sisi’s Regime is a Gift to the Islamic State” (Shadi Hamid, Markaz, Brookings)
“Egypt starts from a different set of assumptions than the United States does. At the most basic level, the Egyptian government fails the first test of counterterrorism, which requires correctly identifying who the actual terrorists are. It continues to act as if the Islamic State and the Muslim Brotherhood are interchangeable — something that no Western intelligence agency takes seriously. As a result, Egypt has made itself a burden. The Egyptian regime is not — and, more importantly, cannot be — a reliable counterterrorism partner. This is no accident of circumstance. Hoping and claiming to fight terrorism, Egypt, however unwittingly, is fueling an insurgency.”