Turkey and Israel follow similar strategies - Erdoğan advisor

Turkey’s strategy in north Syria is similar to what Israel does on the south of the country, Erdoğan’s advisor İlnur Çevik told CNN Türk.

Çevik noted that the members of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) are ‘normal’ people and they are not affiliated to el Kaida. He added that Israel has also created a 40 kilometer safe zone in Syria beyond the Golan heights and is following a similar strategy. “We are bringing humanitarian aid to the people, establishing a new system for them. Israel did the same” he said, and added that “Israel does one more thing, it cooperates with two branches of FSA forces”.

“If Russia had not opened up the airspace, forget entering al-Bab and Afrin, we could not even have flown drones (in Syria),” İlnur Çevik also said during the same interview.

Russia had recently been proving itself to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Çevik said.

“In recent times, Russia has been proving itself to our president. It has shown a good performance, as well. My personal grade is 10 out of 10,” he said.

The building contractor, who has carried out projects in northern Iraq, added that Turkey’s greater willingness to engage with its neighbourhood was good from a business perspective.

“Mosul will be reconstructed. Will (the Turkish city of) Gaziantep or Washington reconstruct Mosul? Of course Gaziantep will do it,” he said. “If we had been in Iraq in time we would have had a lot more say.”

“The great heroism and self-sacrifice of our boys … has put us strongly into Syria and has saved our future. May Allah bless our martyrs and veterans,” Çevik said.

“We have around 50 martyrs, if we hadn’t given them up we wouldn’t have entered Afrin. The (continued) existence of the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) there might have cost us 1,000 martyrs inside Turkey in the future.”