Although Turkey has long been implicated in the depths of the Syrian crisis, the Turkish public is newly anxious over claims that the Turkish Armed Forces are preparing to invade Syria to set up a buffer zone, following the fall of Idlib in late March to the Jabhat al-Nusra-led Army of Conquest.
Amid widespread speculation that the government will declare war so it can cancel the upcoming legislative elections, Gursel Tekin, secretary-general of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), said on May 7, “Turkey will enter Syria with a military operation tonight or Friday.” Tekin claimed he had been tipped off by a reputable source and added, “I am calling on the prime minister. Please get up and say, ‘There is no such madness. That is a baseless claim. Deny what I said.’”