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Turkey appears to want more than Syria’s oil

Like Moscow and Washington, Ankara seems to be coveting the oilfields of Deir ez-Zor in Syrian Kurdistan, which Kurds fear would give Turkey an opening to take over the entire Rojava area.
Pump jacks operate in an oil field in the countryside of al-Qahtaniyah town in Syria's northeastern Hasakeh province near the Turkish border, on March 11, 2020. (Photo by Delil SOULEIMAN / AFP) (Photo by DELIL SOULEIMAN/AFP via Getty Images)

HASAKAH, Syria — Syrian Kurds have been concerned for some time that Turkey's plans include much more than acquiring oil fields in their region. According to some observers, Ankara's strategic goal is to completely eliminate the autonomously administered area of northeast Syria, known as Rojava or Syrian Kurdistan.

Amed Sido — a liaison between the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the international coalition against the Islamic State (IS) — believes this is true. Sido recently told Al-Monitor that Ankara plans to take over more areas that SDF liberated from IS. “This is evidenced by Turkey’s continuous bombardment of the countryside of Tell Abyad, Manbij, Ain Issa, Tell Tamr, and other areas," Sido said.

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