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News Analysis: Analysts warn high risk of Syrian retaliation against Turkey, Israel

English.news.cn   2013-09-07 16:10:51            

ISTANBUL, Sept. 7 (Xinhua) -- Turkish analysts warn high risk of Syrian retaliation against Turkey and Israel if they join in military intervention led by the United States against Syria.

Turkey's border towns with Syria are within the firing range, and there is also a high risk of unconventional warfare, such as car bombs by pro-Syria groups in the region, said Orcun Orhan, specialist in the Center of Middle Eastern Strategic Studies.

"Syria's retaliation against Turkey will be indirect, such as terrorist attacks; no one will easily understand who organize them, " Orhan told Xinhua in an interview.

Mensur Akgun, director of the Global Political Trends Center and chairman of Department of International Relations at Istanbul Kultur University, argued that "I don't think that Syria will be able to launch a long range missile...They should know that in case of any retaliation, both Turkish and U.S. forces are on high alert and will immediately activate the missiles," adding that NATO will be behind Turkey and will respond immediately.

"The limited military intervention will not satisfy Turkey. It will be only a small punishment for Assad and it will not bring end to the regime," said Turkish academic Soli Ozel.

However, Akgun believed that "If they hit enough number of military capabilities and locations of missiles, I don't think that the (Syrian) regime will be able to survive too long."

The analysts noted that joining or giving full support to any kind of military intervention against Syria is a big dilemma for Turkey, urging the public to discuss whether the measures taken are sufficient.

As the clock is ticking for the military intervention, Turkey is working to take necessary precautions against potential retaliation.

Turkey's army build up on its Syrian border continued, with some 400 chemical, biological and nuclear units arriving in the region as a measure against a possible chemical threat.

While some analysts cited NATO anti-missile defense systems deployed in Turkey, others doubted their effectiveness.

"The citizens in the southern border have not been given adequate equipment to protect themselves, especially from chemical attacks," said Turkish academic Soli Ozel. "Let's say that one battery misses one missile... The smart missile may not be so smart."

According to the latest survey, conducted by German Marshall Fund, 72 percent of Turkish citizens are against Turkish government's policy in involving any kind of military intervention.

So far, 67 Turkish citizens have been killed due to the firing from the Syrian side of the border; another 53 killed after a bomb explosion in the border town of Reyhanli.


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Editor: Tang Danlu
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