Russia likely to use Syrian Kurdish card against Turkey - experts
Some experts believe that Russia may use the Syrian Kurds as a pressure card against Ankara in response to Turkey's support for Ukraine.

Some regional experts believe that Turkey's opposition to Russia's recent invasion into Ukraine may have a negative impact on the fragile cooperation between Ankara and Moscow in Syria.

Ghalib Dalai, a Turkish affairs analyst at the Chatham House Institute in London, warned that Turkey's opposition to Russia's actions in Ukraine could have a negative impact on Moscow's co-operation with Ankara in Syria, especially over the Syrian Kurds.

"Syria remains a hot topic for Turkey," he told the Middle East Eye news website. "Russia may put pressure on Turkey in Syria."

In an article published in the Modern Journal Diplomacy, Dr. James Dorsey, an analyst at the Rajaratnam School of International Studies, warned of possible tensions between Turkey and Russia in Syria over Ankara's support for Kiev.

Referring to the Russian Deputy Foreign Minister's recent support for the Syrian Kurds' participation in the Syrian Constitutional Commission, just days before Moscow recognized the independence of the two regions in Ukraine, he called it a sign that Russia could use the Syrian Kurdish card against Turkey. The analyst noted that in the past, Turkey was the main opponent of the Kurds' presence in the committee, calling them terrorists. However, Moscow's emphasis on Kurdish participation in the talks can be seen as a change in Moscow's position.

The Middle East expert also referred to the recent differences between Russia and Turkey over the non-withdrawal of Syrian Kurdish forces from the Turkish border and wrote: "This shows that Russia is no longer willing to cooperate widely and coordinate with Turkey in northern Syria, while Turkey's actions against the Syrian Kurds in the past would not have been possible without Moscow's consent.

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