Turkish agency launches aid campaign for Syria’s Idlib

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On the contrary, they would create further suffering, alienate and radicalize more Syrians.

He said a full-scale battle in Idlib "would unleash a humanitarian nightmare unlike any seen in the blood-soaked Syrian conflict".

Violence in northwest Syria has displaced more than 30,000 people this month alone, the United Nations said, warning that a looming assault could create the century's "worst humanitarian catastrophe".

It is unclear when the offensive will formally begin and what impact the fall of Idlib could have on Turkish-controlled Afrin and the northern provinces controlled by the US-backed and Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

Turkey, which has sent troops to Idlib and supports some of the armed groups, called for "an immediate ceasefire" and urged "the global community to vocally and actively support our efforts to this end".

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"Russia and Iran also rejected similar calls from the United Kingdom and others at the U.N. Security Council on the same day", Burt added.

Turkey is concerned that HTS could seek to use civilians as human shields and prevent them from reaching Afrin.

The Turkish military now has a large presence inside the Idlib Governorate; however, it is still not clear whether or not they plan on confronting the Syrian government forces.

He said this requires time and patience and is what Turkey has been trying to achieve in its separation efforts in Idlib. "The consequences of inaction are vast", Erdogan said.

The offensive came just hours after more than 60 air raids killed at least four civilians in southern Idlib on Saturday.

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She also said that "Russia has the power to stop the catastrophe looming in Idlib". "They still have the power to match their words of peace with deeds by working in Geneva to achieve a political transition in Syria".

Erdogan's comments came just four days after meeting with his Iranian and Russian counterparts in Tehran to develop a strategy to protect Idlib's civilians, where Erdogan failed to achieve his goal, a ceasefire in the province which is home to almost 3 million people.

Trump has twice ordered USA -led strikes against targets in Syria in response to what Washington called the Assad government's use of chemical weapons against civilians. The global community fears Assad and his allies are preparing to carry out a final assault on the province.

The Idlib area forms part of an arc of territory in the northwest representing the last big area held by the opposition.

Russia's Nebenzia responded saying attempts to separate the three Astana guarantors "will not be successful".

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Secretary of Defense James Mattis declined to say Tuesday whether the U.S. would take military action against the Syrian regime should it use chemical weapons, but he did say Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad has "been warned". "We are on the eve of a considerable humanitarian and security catastrophe", Le Drian said. Let us make no mistake: "such an operation would not achieve the stated goal", he told the Security Council.

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