World newspapers touched on Friday, as the United States blamed Russia for the killing of Turkish soldiers in Syria, America's tightening of sanctions against Iran despite the large spread of Corona in the country, and Iran's release of thousands of prisoners today, including politicians.
Arab News: The United States blames Russia, not Assad, for Turkey's losses
The Arab News newspaper touched on the United States accusing Russia of killing dozens of Turkish military personnel in Syria and said: "US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the United States believes that Russia killed dozens of Turkish military personnel during its operations in Syria, without specifying the location or date of the accident.
The timing of this statement is suspicious, amid ongoing discussions about the activation of the Russian-made S-400 missile system in April, as the United States blamed Russia, not Assad, for the killing of Turkish soldiers in Idlib.
It is the first time that Washington has directly criticized Moscow for the killing of at least 34 Turkish soldiers in an air strike launched by Syrian-backed Syrian government forces in its campaign to retake the last stronghold of the rebels in Syria, Idlib, and Pompeo said, "We stand with Turkey, our NATO ally, We continue to consider additional measures to support Turkey and end the violence in Idlib and Syria more broadly. "
"More than 50 Turkish soldiers were killed in Idlib in February and March, the majority were killed in an air strike that most people believe was carried out by the Russian Air Force though, officials say, and Turkish officials say the S-400 system will be launched in April." Aaron Stein, director of the Middle East program at the Institute for Foreign Policy Research, told Arab News.
Joe Macron believes that Pompeo's statement comes at a time when the United States and Turkey are deepening their cooperation in Syria, and Washington sees an opportunity to push a wedge between Moscow and Ankara.
Turkey will not be able to obtain Patriot missile defense batteries for the U.S., and may be subject to sanctions under the America's Anti-Liabilities through Sanctions Act of 2017 if it does the s400.
Macron said, "Obtaining the Patriot will give Turkey a much-needed deterrent force against Russia and the Syrian regime, but it will not solve the outstanding challenges facing US-Turkish relations."
The Wall Street Journal: The United States tightens sanctions on Iran amid the Coronavirus
Regarding US sanctions on Iran, the Wall Street Journal said: "This week, the Trump administration sent a tough message to Iran through a new wave of sanctions, that the Trump administration will not ease its campaign of economic pressure even as the coronavirus pandemic overcomes the country."
The Trump administration, amid mounting calls to loosen the sanctions campaign, has said it has no intention of loosening the restrictions.
On Thursday, the US Treasury announced new sanctions on Iran, and that Washington had included 5 Iranian companies linked to the petrochemical industry in the sanctions list.
The Guardian: Iran releases 10,000 people, including "political" prisoners
As for the Guardian newspaper, it reported on the release of Iran, including politicians, and said: "Official television reported that Iran will pardon ten thousand prisoners, including some accused of political crimes, on the occasion of the start of the new Persian year on Friday.
Iran is the Middle Eastern country most affected by the pandemic, with the number of deaths reaching 1284, the highest rate after Italy and China, and Health Ministry spokesman Kianosh Jahanpur said that "Covid-19" kills one person in the country every 10 minutes, while 50 new infection are detected every hour.