Weekly Panorama: Turkey bows to Russia in Idlib and Haftar confuse its plans in Libya

Observers said that the past week confrontations between Turkey and "Tahrir Al-Sham" mercenaries proves that Turkey wants to satisfy Russia while protests in Lebanon escalated over the impact of the economic crisis. Concurrently,  Khalifa Haftar is preparing post the Skhirat agreement to head governing body for Libya, which will confuse Ankara's plans.

Over the past week, Arab newspapers have touched on the Idlib's situation as well as the Lebanese protests and the Libyan situation.

Al-Arab: Jihadist factions' revolt in Idlib embarrasses Turkey in face of Russia

The Arab newspapers touched on several issues over Syria during the past week most notably the situation in Idlib. In this context, al-Arab said: "The Turkish army dispersed forcibly a sit-in on Sunday on Aleppo-Lattakia international road known as "M4", northwestern of Syria's Idlib, resulting in the death and injuries in the second confrontation between jihadist factions-linked protestors and the joint Russian-Turkish patrols along this road.

On November 13, the Turkish army dispersed a sit-in on that road, but determined protesters put barricades again to prevent the Russian troops prompting Ankara to use live bullets to disperse them.

Four people were killed and seven others injured and poisoned as the Turkish army fired live bullets and tear gas to break up the sit-in

The sit-in began on March 13 against the Russian-Turkish agreement of March 5, including the opening of Aleppo-Lattakia road to the joint Russian-Turkish patrols.

Russian forces had suspended for days their participation in the patrols with the Turkish side for "security reasons."

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that the situation escalated following deaths among protestors by Turkish forces in the area, where it witnessed clashes with heavy guns between the jihadist elements of the likely "Tahrir Al-Sham" and Turkish forces, in addition to  shells that targeted the Turkish points located in the vicinity of Neirab city at a time the Turkish reconnaissance planes flew heavily in the area.

This is the first time an escalation has occurred between" HTS " and Turkish forces, which portends an unprecedented confrontation, especially as " HTS" becomes a heavy burden on Ankara because many of its members and leaders oppose the Turkish-Russian agreement that might end their influence area in the northwestern Syria.

In March, Ankara bowed to Russia's demands for opening two of the international roads, amid talk of reducing the" HTS "influence under the Turkish-Russian agreement. According to the followers, this explains the alert in the latter ranks and its attempts to thwart the agreement by obstructing the joint Russian-Turkish patrols.

Analysts say that unlike the previous agreement in September 2018, Ankara shows great seriousness in dealing with Russian concerns in efforts to close the trust gap with Moscow, hence its strict intervention towards m4 protesters.

Analysts noted that Turkey has recruited thousands of troops despite the threat of the coronavirus spread in an attempt to apply the agreement forcibly against the" HTS" refusal.

It is well known that the" HTS" is divided among itself, as many of its important leaders believe they should mistrust the Turkish side and move to defend their position of influence, even if this necessitates confrontation with Turkey, while the pragmatism prefers to go along with Turkey.

Al-Bayan: Clashes in Lebanon against the backdrop of deteriorating economic conditions

"Hundreds demonstrated in the northern Lebanese city of Tripoli on Monday night against the backdrop of the deteriorating economic conditions in the country, in protests with security forces despite the isolation measures imposed to contain the new coronavirus," according to what AFP reported.

 "A group of men, women and children took part in a march chanting  "revolution, revolution," the demonstrators tried to reach the house of one of the deputies, but the army prevented them, leading to clashes," the correspondent said.

In Al-Nour Square, demonstrators threw stones at the army officers who fired in the air to disperse them.

The National Media Agency reported that demonstrators destroyed the front of the Credit Libanais Bank in Boulevard.

The Lebanese army announced that "a number of bank branches were burned, a military vehicle of the army units came under a Molotov cocktail attack and another patrol was targeted with a hand grenade causing slight injuries to two soldiers."

In a statement, the army called on "peaceful demonstrators to quickly evacuate the streets and the squares".

The Red Cross announced that three people had been hospitalized, while others received field-based  treatment.

Lebanon is experiencing its worst economic crisis since the civil war (1975-1990), which has been exacerbated by the imposition of isolation measures to try to contain the new coronavirus outbreak.

Al-Sharq al-Awsat: Expected "transition period" by the military in Libya

The newspaper said, "Libya is waiting for an imminent announcement from Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, commander of the National Army, about the details of the next phase, amid continued local, regional and international reactions to his announcement of accepting under the "popular mandate" to take power, also amid questions about the fate of the Accord Government, headed by Faiez al-Sarraj.

Informed sources said that Haftar is scheduled to announce structure to lead a transitional period that may take at least two years under his leadership.

The sources pointed out that Haftar's announcement will end the mandate of Al-Sarraj's Accord Government as illegal and it did not receive the approval of the House of Representatives, which is based in the city of Benghazi (east), but will be retained until the holding of new parliamentary elections. The sources that asked not to be identified said that Haftar will ask the international community to recognize the new phase, as the only official voice, expressing the Libyan people.



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