The U.S. administration’s new plan has not been coordinated with Russia, an official said, and Washington says its campaign would not be thrown off course by Russian airstrikes in Syria.
Iran, Russian Federation and Lebanon’s Hezbollah movement are propping up the Alawite-led Assad government, while Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar back the more moderate Sunni-dominated opposition, along with the U.S., United Kingdom and France.
The province of Idlib appeared to bear the brunt of the attacks, activists said. “From [the Russian and Syrian] perspective, they’re all terrorists, and that’s a recipe for disaster”.
“We’re analysing where the strikes are going every morning”, he told the paper.
When asked whether the recent developments in Syria may cause tension in Turkish-Russian relations, Davutoğlu said, “All of our channels of communication with Russia are open”.
At the same time, he admitted that the Pentagon’s support to the so-called moderate rebels has not worked the way it was planned, because the rebels consider President Assad their primary target and are not willing to confront the Islamic State.
In Raqa, where IS militants have carried out a few of the mass beheadings that they infamously use as online propaganda, activists and residents said the group cancelled Friday prayers and emptied mosques there because they feared more Russian strikes.
Mr Fallon acknowledged the Russian involvement had “complicated” the situation but indicated he still believed that Britain should extend its own bombing campaign to target IS in Syria.
Russia’s airstrikes in Syria could last three to four months, a Russian MP said on Friday, as the country faces stiff criticism for allegedly killing civilians and non-Islamic State opposition groups in the first few days of its campaign.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has admitted IS is not his military’s only target, as other anti-Assad groups will also be pursued.
“We’re working with the Turks and others to see what we can do along the border to make things safer for people”.
The Russian defence ministry said the strikes Friday had completely destroyed an IS facility used to produce explosive devices near the city of Maaret al-Numan in Idlib province in northwest Syria as well as a nearby base.
“It is to be underlined that these efforts resulted in destruction of material and technical basis of terrorists and considerably reduced their combat potential”, Kartapolov said, according to the Russian Ministry of Defense, adding that intelligence suggested up to 600 “mercenaries” were fleeing in panic. He said Russian Federation provided military equipment to support Assad’s regime and that Iran is sending its military commanders.
But they also have very different friends and opposing views of how to resolve a war that has killed at least 250,000 people and driven more than 10 million from their homes. “I will express my sadness over this matter”, said Erdogan in a transcript of the interview published by the official Anatolia news agency.