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  1. Turkish FM Believes Trump Considering Leaving Syria © AP Photo/ Hassan Ammar Middle East 13:33 16.12.2018(updated 16:52 16.12.2018) Get short URL 5115 Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu on Sunday commented on the Khashoggi case, the US' military presence in Syria, and a possible extradition of Islamic cleric Fethullah Gulen. According to the Turkish Foreign Minister, Washington is considering pulling troops out of Syria. The US is yet to comment on the statement. "President [Donald] Trump, I think, is now considering leaving Syria once again," Cavusoglu said at the Doha Forum. Ankara has expressed concerns over US support for the Kurdish militia and repeatedly accused Washington of failing to fulfil its promises regarding the YPG's withdrawal from Manbij. The day before, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Ankara was ready to launch an operation in the northern Syrian city of Manbij against the US-backed Kurdish People's Protection Units, if the United States does not withdraw the Kurdish militia from the area. Earlier this year, Trump was already planning to withdraw US troops from Syria, saying that "it was time for US troops to come home from Syria… to bring our troops back home". However, shortly after talks with his military advisers, Trump changed his position on the issue. Commenting on the change of plans, former US UN envoy Nikki Haley stated that the president "listened to his general completely" on the Syrian issue, "because they don't want ISIS [Daesh*] to come back." While both Turkey and the US have been allies in the US-led coalition's fight against Daesh, the sides have had several disagreements over Washington's support to Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). Ankara opposes the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) — the backbone of the SDF — as it considers the group to be an affiliate of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which outlawed in Turkey as a terrorist organisation. Commenting on the YPG's fight against Daesh in Syria and Iraq, Cavusoglu suggested that this assault might be an attempt to take control of territories in the two countries. "When it comes to YPG/PKK, our Western friends are supporting them. Why? They have one pretext that YPG is fighting Daesh. Maybe, in certain areas, yes, but the question is why they have been fighting Daesh? Just because they hate the ideology or to gain more territories in both countries [Iraq, Syria]? I think the answer is the second one," Cavusoglu asked, adding that the rest of the world chose not to face the truth. Syria's New Constitution Speaking further about the Syrian issue, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu criticised other countries' attempts to draft Syria's new constitution on behalf of the country's citizens, including during the Astana-format talks. He insisted that Syrians themselves should be the ones to do it. "Our coalition allies, they have their own small group meeting [in Astana]. From time to time they try to draft a constitution for Syria and in the past, in Astana, some countries also tried that, but we are against drafting a constitution on behalf of the people of Syria by the others. So let them draft their own constitution," the foreign minister said at the Doha Forum. The drafting of the new Syrian constitution, which is set to become part of the political settlement of the armed conflict in the country, is expected to be delegated to the Syrian constitutional committee that is yet to be established. Khashoggi Сase The minister also touched upon the Khashoggi case, saying that voice recordings allegedly pertaining to the Khashoggi case prove the murder was planned in advance. According to Cavusoglu, intelligence services of all interested countries were able to listen to them. READ MORE: US Senators Submit Draft to Hold SA Crown Prince Responsible in Khashoggi Case "Intelligence of the countries who were interested [in it] had the opportunity to listen to that voice records. I also did that, together with my president, [Recep Tayyip] Erdogan. So you can see, you can hear very clearly that they planned in advance to kill him," Cavusoglu said. The top diplomat reiterated Turkey's stance on the matter, saying that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was determined from the beginning to fully investigate Khashoggi's case. "President Erdogan has been so determined from the beginning to go to the end of this case and to reach an outcome of the investigation," Cavusoglu said, when asked to comment on claims that Erdogan was "milking" the situation and might pursue political motives, and also the remark that Ankara had not made murder audio recordings public. Khashoggi was last seen entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on 2 October. Later, Saudi authorities announced that a preliminary investigation had found Khashoggi to be dead. The aforementioned probe into the killing of Khashoggi was launched amid mounting international pressure. Following over two weeks of denial, Riyadh admitted that he had been killed in a brawl inside the consulate. On October 26, the Saudi prosecutor general acknowledged that the journalist's murder was premeditated. Commenting on the killing, Riyadh has repeatedly stressed that the assassination had nothing to do with the Saudi Royal family, describing it as a rogue operation. Extradition of Islamic Cleric Fethullah Gulen Speaking about Fethullah Gulen, the Turkish foreign minister said that the United States was working on the extradition of the Islamic cleric to Turkey. READ MORE: Gulen Has No Plans to Relocate After Recent Security Threat — Media Adviser "The perpetrator of the attempted coup, the leader of this terrorist organization [FETO], is still in the United States… Last time when we [the Turkish and US sides] met in Buenos Aires, President Trump told Erdogan that they [the United States] have been working on that [the extradition] but we need to see concrete steps," Mevlut Cavusoglu said at the Doha Forum, held in the Argentine capital between November 30 and December 1. Turkey accuses cleric Fethullah Gulen, who has been living in the United States since 1999, of orchestrating a failed military coup on July 15, 2016, which left 251 people dead and 2,200 injured. Gulen, in turn, has repeatedly denied taking part in the coup. Since the coup failed, approximately 80,000 people have been arrested in Turkey over their alleged links to the cleric.
  2. MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Turkey will consider the possibility of cooperation with Syrian President Bashar Assad in case of his re-election as the country's head as result of a transparent and fair election, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Sunday. During a plenary session interview at the Doha Forum in Qatar, the foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu was asked whether Turkey would cooperate with the government of Assad if the latter was re-elected. "If it is democratic elections and if it is a credible one, then everybody should consider that… We should prepare the country for the elections, and it should be conducted under auspices of the United Nations, under the umbrella of the United Nations. It has to be an inclusive one, everyone, eligible ones, should be able to vote in Syria and outside of Syria, including the refugees in my country and neighboring countries," Cavusoglu said. He stressed that the country's future constitution that would pave the way for the election should be drafted by the Syrian people. Turkish FM Believes Trump Considering Leaving Syria Syria has been in a state of civil war since 2011, with government forces fighting against numerous opposition groups and terrorist organizations. In late 2017, the victory over the Daesh* terrorist group was declared in Syria and Iraq. Certain territories in the two countries are still being cleared from militants. The international efforts have recently been focused on political settlement in Syria, the country's reconstruction and the return of Syrian refugees to their homeland.
  3. Syrian Turkmen, Arabs back Turkey’s planned operation ‘We will return to our homeland as Turkmens, Arabs and Kurds,’ says vice president of Arab and Turkmen tribes association home > Turkey, todays headlines, middle east 16.12.2018 Ankara By Mustafa Guclu and Rauf Maltas SANLIURFA, Turkey Syrian Arabs and Turkmen on Sunday voiced their support for a planned Turkish military operation east of the Euphrates River against the YPG/PKK terrorist group. Omer Dede, vice president of the Syrian Arab and Turkmen Tribes Association, said they welcomed Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's Wednesday remarks that an operation to clear the region, located east of the Euphrates, of the YPG/PKK terrorists will start "in a few days". Speaking to the reporters along with 50 other members in Turkey's southeastern Sanliurfa province, Dede said they expected an immediate Turkish intervention in the region to ensure Syrians' return to their homeland. "They have expelled us out of our lands. We will return to our homeland as Turkmens, Arabs and Kurds," Dede said. "PYD has persecuted our Kurdish brothers the most. Those who are there now had come from Qandil and have nothing to do with our lands. Their sole concern is to divide Syria," Dede said. "If the U.S. wants the elephants to play, let them play in their own country," Dede said, referring to a message that U.S. officials sent to the Syrian opposition groups on Saturday. "When elephants dance, you must stay away from the dance floor," the message read, threatening the Syrian oppositions against supporting the planned operation.
  4. Turkey Says Would Consider Working With Assad If He Won a Democratic Election Kurdish threat made worse by Pentagon backing forcing Ankara to dream of business as usual with Damascus RI Staff 4 hours ago | 230 words 502 Comments It has been apparent for a while now that powers which sough regime-change in Syria from 2011 to about 2016 -- most importantly Turkey, the US, and Saudi Arabia -- have since resigned themselves to the fact Assad won't be dislodged and his government will not fall. Turkey has now gone a step further and has signaled it would be open to restoring relations with Assad, if only he organized a "democratic election" -- meaning an election in which the Turkish-backed Islamists were allowed to run. It is easy to by cynical about such a Turkish statement but actually in view of the fact that Turkey remains the single-most important protector and sponsor of what remains of the Syrian Islamist rebellion in the north of the country that is an extraordinary statement. Despite the intimate ties between the Islamists in Ankara and Idlib the former are willing to go back to business as usual with Assad, if only he will grant them a face-saving election which he is sure to win. The Islamists in Idlib will grind their teeth, but from the point of view of Turkey, between the Kurds and Assad, the latter is the lesser evil. Moreover as the legitimate head of the Syrian state Assad can curtail Kurdish ambition and be useful to Ankara's security concerns in ways the divided and defeated Islamists wholly dependent on Turkish monies and protection can not.
  5. Fact: Roobow was Shabab as long as Shabab was "nationalist" against serving foreign interests. He was neither Ethiopia or Eritrea ally anytime. Eritrea has some debt to score with Roobow for him leaving Shebab which if Roobow had become active could have denied Shabab the South West. If he becomes president/governor of SW then SW may become strongest Region. Fiction and lies: America wants him therefore cannot be governor, will damage our friendship with USA Ethiopians want him there fore will be obstacle to our good relationship He has blood in his hands (unless the blood he spilled is special blood, people who burned farms and food storage to starve and make people surrender are in politics and have been ministers....) All SOLers seem to agree, of course, one fact that Roobow belongs to "wrong tribe". If the current speaker cannot fill two shoes, that is Jawari and Sherifka then Sherifka needs to come back and be the peace maker.
  6. In the neighborhood: Uganda: I am with Britain in America camp Djibouti: I am with France and Saudi Arabia and if France falls with Britain Ethiopia: I am with America, but but but the Tigray have put me in the deep end with Russia (Military about everything) and Econmy China about everything...Stuck in the mad can't run Sudan: I am with Everybody but good with Saudi Arabia Egypt: I am fully integrated with America, Saudi, Israel Eritrea: I am with America in the clear Somalia: I wanted to go with Turkey, China, but I can't so I am third level America (UAE to Eritrea to Somalia) Kenya: I am with America/Britain
  7. Trump Scrambles for Africa, Plans to Pressure African Leaders to Chose Between the US, and Russia and China Can't we all just be friends? Not according to America's new Africa policy Daniel Larison Fri, Dec 14, 2018 | 500 words 3,327 Comments The Wall Street Journal reports on the Trump administration’s plans for U.S. policy in Africa: President Trump plans to reshape America’s policy in Africa by challenging the continent’s leaders to make a strategic choice to align themselves with America instead of Russia or China. As he has done in other parts of the globe, Mr. Trump is angling to strengthen ties with like-minded African allies and isolate uncooperative leaders who work with America’s biggest competitors. “The predatory practices pursued by China and Russia stunt economic growth in Africa, threaten the financial independence of African nations, inhibit opportunities for U.S. investment, interfere with U.S. military operations and pose a significant threat to U.S. national security interests,” John Bolton, Mr. Trump’s national security adviser, is expected to say on Thursday in a speech unveiling the new approach. U.S. security interests aren’t threatened by Chinese and Russian influence in Africa, and framing U.S. policy for the entire continent as a zero-sum great power competition isn’t going to be very appealing to African governments. Considering how large and diverse Africa is, defining U.S. policy as one for the entire continent is not smart, and it will probably be taken as a sign that the administration doesn’t know what it’s talking about. Most of these states had a history of non-alignment during the Cold War, and I suspect most of them will not want to be forced into making such a choice now. The administration’s plan is called “Prosper Africa,” but African governments will be understandably skeptical that Trump has any interest in seeing their countries prosper. The plan appears to be forcing African governments to choose Washington’s camp or risk facing “isolation” imposed by the U.S. That is a typically heavy-handed approach, and it’s one that won’t be welcomed. Part of Bolton’s speech will involve more of the usual U.N.-bashing that we expect from him, and it will apparently include a threat to cut off support for peacekeeping operations on the continent: Mr. Bolton also is expected to warn the United Nations that the Trump administration could end its support for peacekeeping efforts in Africa, home to seven of the 14 ongoing “blue helmet” operations. Yanking support for peacekeeping operations would be a good way to anger and alienate a lot of governments across the continent. It seems that Bolton’s hostility to the U.N. is so great that he doesn’t care if it undermines the larger policy that he is supposed to be unveiling. Just by threatening to take away that support, the administration is telling its would-be partners that it isn’t reliable. Much as it has done in other parts of the world, the Trump administration thinks that it can rely on threats to cajole states to take their side, but it is no more likely to work in Africa than it has anywhere else. Source: The American Conservative
  8. Denmark, European Union, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Kenya, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States, AMISOM and the United Nations. A state assembly member have been killed in Baydhaba. From the list above Turkey, Uganda, UK, Italy, EU, are most important. Note: No Eritrea, No Ethiopia even to just call for peace which is normal diplomatic thing to say. ____________________________________________________________ Mogadishu – The following international partners* (listed below) are concerned about the recent events in South West State. We extend our deepest condolences for the death of the South West State assembly member and others who have died in the violence in Baidoa. We deplore all violence and any other acts that could exacerbate the humanitarian situation. The international community underscores that there should be unified support for the agreed framework governing the elections, and urges all parties to respect the integrity of the electoral process. We encourage constructive dialogue to resolve political differences and address other challenges in order to advance the political and economic progress of the country. * = Denmark, European Union, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Kenya, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States, AMISOM and the United Nations. International Partners Concerned Over Recent Events in Somalia’s South West State Friday December 14, 2018
  9. The westerners saying "Throwing the baby with the ..water" is already showing signs in kililka. Ethiopian nationalists hated Iley for one very fundamental reason. He may have shown Ethiopian flag or made statements, but the region was moving autonomously. Administration, Media, Education.. Now all these institutions are under attack and changes. Ethiopian nationalists love the new man since he is showing in practice on the ground being Ethiopian, yet the position of the Somali in Ethiopia is lower than what it was last year.
  10. People in their haste to see something action or even bloodshed as happened in Baydhaba always forget that: "I warn you against shedding blood, indulging in it and making a habit of it, for blood never sleeps." Sultan Salaxadin One of the most astonishing things the Sultan did was, not rewarding those who fought for him or not punishing those he defeated, but rewarding those who stayed out of the wars. He gifted a monastery to the Xabeshi for not participating in the crusades. Its still standing and used to this day in Jerusalem named Sultan Monastery/Dier Sultan. The sands are shifting already. Eritrea that is jumping from place to place now, will run out of gas. Ghelleh is saving his gas. He also has a gas station that Eritrea does not have. Berbera will be completed and be a mute point to argue about it, while Farmaajo, Abbiy and Isayas have not finished their third round of coffee yet.
  11. His position may be an ambassador, but he is one of those big shots from Meles, WSLF, SDL..days. If I am not mistaken Shemsudin was on the list of Somali personalities who were to be eliminated by Aweys group. Aweys group attempted to assassinate Dr. Abdulmejid who was minister of transport at the time, another one from the list.
  12. Which America? Take a simple looking issue: If in US congress these members support Yemen people...these 2 have more influence than all the Saudi lobby. I think this issue has something to do with it.
  13. Trump is not impeached but in so many ways paralyzed. He wanted to cut cost by managing the competition with Russia, but is prevented even to say hi to Russia let alone negotiate. Farmaajo will be the same. Now every region has its antennae up. Every MP will just be waiting for the next conference. And Farmaajo will be so preoccupied with regions. Regions win since they are at home and can out wait anybody. Puntland or SW can out wait anyone. Farmaajo or Ethiopia cannot out wait regions. Djibouti or Somaliland can out wait Ethiopia let alone Farmaajo who is on shaky grounds.
  14. Birmingham https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DuNI1a0XQAAVQVZ.jpg