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Sunday, May 9, 2021

Report: Qatar brokering Saudi Arabia-Turkey talks to oust Assad

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February 2012 protest against Syrian president Bashar Al Assad.
February 2012 protest against Syrian president Bashar Al Assad.

Long-time regional rivals Saudi Arabia and Turkey are considering forming a military alliance to overthrow embattled Syrian President Bashar Al Assad – with the help of Qatar, the Huffington Post reports.

Citing “sources familiar with the discussions,” the online publication said that Turkey would provide ground troops, while Saudi Arabia conducts airstrikes to help opposition fighters gain ground in Syria.

Syrian Embassy in Doha
Syrian Embassy in Doha

Qatar’s Emir apparently informed US President Barack Obama of the talks during his first official visit to the White House in February, one source said.

Qatar has long advocated for a government transition in Syria. It was the first country to host an opposition-operated embassy, and has also reportedly been allowing US military forces to train anti-Assad rebels here.

However, one analyst said while anything is possible in this “new age of out-of-area-Saudi military action,” such a military alliance looks unlikely.

Skepticism

In an email to Doha News, David Roberts, a lecturer at King’s College London, said:

“Though the region is in flux presently and KSA’s new militarism has been something to behold, the necessary political and military agreements for this kind of a deal will be hard to reach.”

He added that a partnership in which Saudi Arabia only had to contribute airstrikes and not send troops to Syria may appeal to the kingdom, but Turkey would have a hard time domestically selling the idea of putting its own troops in harm’s way.

However, according to the Huffington Post:

“(Turkish President Recep) Erdogan has taken a number of steps to suggest that he is preparing to deploy ground troops to Syria. Weeks after he met with the Saudi king, the Turkish leader signed a defense deal with Qatar to facilitate intelligence sharing, military cooperation and possible deployment of Turkish and Qatari troops in one another’s countries.

This agreement builds upon a joint training deal the two countries signed in 2012, and positions Qatar well to mediate the discussions between Turkey and Saudi Arabia.”

In terms of KSA and Turkey’s relationship, the two countries have been at odds since the Arab revolutions broke out in 2011.

Saudi Arabia supported the removal of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, and labeled his Muslim Brotherhood party a terrorist group.

Former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi
Former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi

Turkey on the other hand condemned the ousting, and welcomed Muslim Brotherhood members who fled Egypt and Saudi Arabia and were later pressured to leave Qatar.

However, Saudi Arabia’s new king, Sheikh Salman, is perceived to be friendlier to the Brotherhood than his predecessor, who died in January.

Some analysts say that following the recent Saudi-led military attack on Yemen against the Shia Houthi rebels, the kingdom could use the support of Sunni Muslim Brotherhood members in Yemen against the opposition.

In terms of a timeline for Saudi-Turkey action against Syria, HuffPo states that joint intervention would likely not occur until after a Camp David meeting in the spring, when Obama will meet with GCC leaders to discuss Iran, Syria and Yemen.

Thoughts?

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Yacine
Yacine
6 years ago

My comment is held on for approval 🙁

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago

Go on, do it. Get dragged into a war you will find no way out of. The Americans have the best funded and best equipped military in the world but still got dragged into a bitter never ending war in Iraq. (Well until they eventually saw sense, got out and left them to just kill each other)

Diego
Diego
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Yes, but they never should have entered Iraq.They did not even finish properly in Afghanistan.If truth be known Bush jr. probably had in the back of his mind that he would finish what his dad did not.Saying that Syria is already in a mess and Assad will not mind as long as he can have some power. I would like to see reginal powers step it up in this situation.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  Diego

Yes they certainly should not, Iraq/Mespotamia has been a battleground for the last 2000 years between the Jews, Romans, Persian and Islamic armies, (both Shia and Sunni, Ottoman and Arab).

Scarletti
Scarletti
6 years ago

its about time….. these nations actually got on and sorted their own patch out rather than relying on Nato !

Anonymouse
Anonymouse
6 years ago
Reply to  Scarletti

NATO??

Scarletti
Scarletti
6 years ago
Reply to  Anonymouse

yes NATO (as in the Serbian intervention)

Anonymouse
Anonymouse
6 years ago
Reply to  Scarletti

Okay, how does that tie in with this story?

Annonymous
Annonymous
6 years ago
Reply to  Anonymouse

Turkey is a member of zionist NATO. So dogs do what their master told them to. ICI (istanbul cooperation initiative) is to protect israel.

Anonymouse
Anonymouse
6 years ago
Reply to  Annonymous

Ummm, what? This is not a NATO action, Turkey is not acting as part of the alliance. As for the rest of your comment, it makes no sense.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  Annonymous

That’s the problem when you have states based on one religion, you look to your holy books to justify killing the non-believers.

Scarletti
Scarletti
6 years ago
Reply to  Annonymous

I had always hoped the WWW and access to a broader and better informed option would wipe out this kind of myopic view

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago

Where’s egypt in these discussion… Oh yup right… I forget .. Egypt is no longer relevant

Observant One
Observant One
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

Where is Qatar?

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

In a more significant place than Australia will ever be

Smile
Smile
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

…absolutely beautiful reply.

Anonymouse
Anonymouse
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

History in no way supports that opinion.

ShabinaKhatri
ShabinaKhatri
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

Deleting this and subsequent thread for devolving the conversation.

SLICK
SLICK
6 years ago

Since Saudi Arabia has started flexing it’s muscle in Yemen, and is now looking to team up with Turkey against Assad in Syria, things in the Middle East might start taking on a new façade. Time will only tell, but if Assad leaves Syria the power vacuum will fill quickly. ISIS, and the other Sunni groups wanting space will move at a heightened pace. If SA and whatever coalition it can muster can make Assad leave Syria, contain the Houthis in Yemen, and assist with ISIS in Iraq, they will show other ME countries, as well as the world, that they (SA) mean business, then the U.S. can work singlehandedly with SA rather than the other rag tag players in the region trying to keep peace in the ME and let SA be the new Sheriff in town.

Saeed Ahmad Khan
Saeed Ahmad Khan
6 years ago

World war 3. More will involve.

Azk
Azk
6 years ago

libya was invaded and bombed. Whats the result now? large swathes of it are under the control of ISIS.
Firstly who all are they going to attack. There’s Assad’s forces, ISIS, Al Qaeda and Jabhat al Nusra. on how many fronts are they going to fight? Turkey will be shooting their foot if they invade Syria. Plus attacking Assad will invite a response from Hezbollah and thus destabilize lebanon.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  Azk

I agree, Assad is nasty but then are so many of the rebel groups fighting him, who do you pick as your champion? Saudi, Qatar will go for the Sunni factions, Iran will back the Shias with Hezbelloha and Turkey has no interest in the country apart from keeping the trouble out of Turkey so will attack anyone who threatens that.

Pity the poor people of Syria who have to live and die through this mess.

Mr. B
6 years ago

I’d be surprised to see a big ground invasion, but Turkish special forces on the ground, doing for the Syrian rebels what Iran’s people are doing for Iraq’s army, seems super likely.

The prediction that Turkey would expand back into these states has been the subject of heated discussion. If Syria proves unable to govern itself for long enough, no matter what its voters say, Turkey will fill that void.

Observant One
Observant One
6 years ago

What is the Al Thani stance on all this? Or are they far to insignificant to have any impact?

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

Yawn ..

Nuremburg
Nuremburg
6 years ago

How about we pull all forces out of Syria and let ISIS and Assad’s forces annihilate each other? Wishful thinking, I know.

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