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Syria, Assad Russia, Turkey discussed on Today in Focus

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Automatic TRANSCRIPT

All the gains that the opposition had made up until runcie fourteen ended up becoming reversed. There's been a very systematic. Study each Jack Tree in Syria since then where city after city that you civilians. The rebels places like Homs. Hundreds of rebel fighters and their families have started to leave. The Syrian city of Aleppo battle for Aleppo is over like there are Syrian. Army has regained control of the city of Dara steadily fallen and each time. That has happened. The rebels and civilians living in those areas have been given the choice to reconcile with the regime to stay all they were allowed to be bused to it live. Which is the sort of top North West corner of the country on the border with Turkey? All of these people who have left these areas forever reason. They don't want to reconcile. They may be afraid of repercussions for men in these places who picks up guns or who deserts the army who avoided military conscription. They're afraid they will be arrested or may two fights so for very many reasons. These people ends up going north every time. And that's why we now have this very peculiar situation where it used to be a very quiet forming province with about one million people in on. Now it's home to about three million people. In some cases there are families now in it layup who have had to move house three full up to seven times one family. I spoke to recently a case. So is the war goes on. You've got all of these people funneling into the last remaining part of Syria. Not under regime. Control is right on the Turkish border and as more and more of arrive. Turkey is watching becoming increasingly concerned. What did they do so a de-escalation deal was brokered in two thousand eighteen between Turkey? Who backs some of the rebel groups? Kardashian? It live and Moscow who backs Assad which actually to everybody's surprise kind of works for a while it's a really Saad state of affairs in Syria. I thought Almost every ceasefire deal up until that one had just never held never works but there was a real understanding. From every policy of how desperate the situation would become if a bustle. Ellipoid launched so what was supposed to happen was the areas of Lebanon a little bit of the surrounding countryside of the other provinces. They controlled was supposed to be. That was supposed to be a ceasefire line. There was still attacks carried out by either side which obviously is very asymmetrical when you consider that. Assad Russia have an air force but by and large. The ceasefire was maintained for about a year. It was fairly quiet and it like it was holding but unfortunately it was probably always gonna be a stopgap measure. As you've written over the years. The situation in it. Lib Is impossibly complicated. Most people living there are ordinary civilians but there are also several armed groups. Some of the moderate. But you've also reported on a jihadist organization could hire to hear our sham all. Ats What did they play in the eventual collapse of the ceasefire deal in January last year. H Yes ended up DE FACTO. Kinda taking control of the whole area so to Assad unto Putin there was now a pretext to say that if a launched a campaign on it live they were combating terrorists. Who not covered by the ceasefire deal? Hdfs have changed names about four or five times which is one of the one of the reasons why serious so hall to follow. I mean The situation on the ground changes so rapidly. Basically they used to be called al-nusra which was advising root for years in Syria which was de facto. Al Qaeda's Syrian affiliates. So not so mince words or anything. These guys all bad guys. These guys are. They always created a very problematic. Grey Zone full Because any kind of ceasefire deal obviously has to take them into consideration but at the same time that's technically a designated terrorist group. That's why a lot of AIDS and a lot of help. International helped it lip has dried up in the last year since. Ats took over because foreign governments are very wary of being seen to be funding terrorists. The twentieth deal is a real Odyssey. It basically created this kind of internationally protected many semi Jihadist States. It became completely untenable after. Ats took over the whole region. So we knew that this offensive was going to commit some points Women offensive did come more happened at. How did the deal breakdown? The deals started to unravel at the beginning of one thousand nine hundred eighteen by April twenty nineteen. We were seeing of real regime campaign for lab restarted. Syrian GOVERNMENT HELICOPTER. Gunships have been dropping barrel bombs towns in the provinces of Allah drums or cylinders packed with explosives and shrapnel all the calls of indiscriminate destruction artillery fire Russian airstrikes add to the bombardment. We saw this attritional campaign starting to kind of pick away at the edges of Lebanon too slowly pushed the rebels back but it didn't start hitting proper urban centers towns and villages with a ferocious bombing campaign by Moscow designed to make the civilian population flee until December the airstrikes. Shelly unbottled Boma talks when it lip appears designed to do just push people out. I'm they're now cornered with nowhere else to go. Get Tomato may go take revenge on all those who caused this. What have we done to deserve? This what have we done. I plead to God for mercy. For God's sake we're being burned alive. That has happened in Syria. Time and time again. You very fiercely. Bomb an urban center to demoralize civilian population to scare them to make them flee which is what they do. Then you get to Rolin Assads ground forces on say that e for claims that geographical area. We are seeing that on steroids in it live at the moment the territory that's controlled by rebels now has shrunk by almost hof in the space about two months. So it's been a really ferocious campaign which has pushed everybody who was living in the area previously to the Turkish border where they think they're going to be safe and say they're being pushed out to the border with Turkey. What is happening to them when they get a well? You've got to get to the Buddha. I this several documented instances of the regime firing on civilian convoys fleeing north on the roads North so even the journey itself is very difficult and very dangerous terrifying absolutely terrified. I spoke to a man called smell of Dila this week. Wine Izmailov. I'm thirty years. Old is the rescue volunteer worker with the White Helmets and he has a wife and two small daughters who actually made this journey themselves this week. Even though it's incredibly dangerous they didn't feel like they had a choice to wait for. Assad ground troops on radio militias and Afghan militias and some Kurdish forces to show up in the town that they were living and I had to move because of the on third down. You know tens of rockets hit the village where you just on my way to North side and that there is bombing on the Hospital Hospital and scribes a sea of civilians trying to make their way north with their with pickup trucks and cars. Completely full of people children the belongings. They could take it was like it was and it is up to now. Life goes before the this rogue. If you go to the north you can see fluids of Civilians moving thousand cars. Thousands of cars All of them looking for survive doing their best to justify survive. They know that even when they make it to somewhat further north that the offensive hasn't reached. There's basically nothing wasting their for them and they can't afford to buy new things. I'm Hassam Hussain from city of Syracuse. Another family that I spoke to you this week. Described how there's basically no services in the areas that they pass through and they're living that they fled to now. We are serving a lot because the basic surface on non existing Norfolk atrocity Noah. No hitting source. We are going to the noun to know what to do our where to do or where to go. There is no longer a safe place and live all and crucially. What we're looking at are extremely cold. Winter conditions and elaborate now it was minus seven a few nights ago and several children have died from exposure to the conditions and one family one family in tents on the border The father had a kerosene heater that he was trying to win the way but they he actually ended up space in them and they will guide in sleep. So.