The March local elections had been a top priority in the country, occupying the agenda of politicians and the media for a while. However, with the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) and Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) declaring that their People's Alliance will resume, news has shifted. This is because no one either expects a surprise in the elections, or finds encouragement in discussing the campaign process, as the People's Alliance, which beat the Nation Alliance in the presidential and parliamentary elections, is known to be more powerful than any alliance on the opposition side.
While the news in the country suffered from a lack of enthusiasm, an interesting news story recently appeared and led to a sudden change.
It was about the United States' future aims in northern Syria. As known, the U.S. administration has been claiming strangely that the PKK-affiliated Syrian terrorist elements are fighting Daesh with U.S. forces, while the non-state group's sole target is to form a statelet in the region near Turkey's border.
The U.S.' stance on PKK terrorism is unpredictable. While it has close relations with PKK-affiliated groups, the Democratic Union Party (PYD) and its armed militia the People's Protection Units (YPG), it has put a 12 million-dollar bounty on the heads of three senior PKK members. It is clear that Washington is trying to confuse and deceive the Turkish leadership. However, so far it hasn't been successful.
There is no doubt that the U.S.' regional policy has always been harmful to local states and people at the same time. Its brutal Iraq invasion and current fandango with Daesh signal that more bad fate is at the door for Syria.
Knowing well the U.S.' regional intentions and keeping in mind past experiences, Ankara is highly disturbed by this U.S. policy. As such, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has sent a strong message to the U.S. leadership.
"There has been another gameplay going on near our borders. It is clear that the purpose of those who arm hundreds of thousands is not to fight against terrorism, as there is no single Daesh element left on the Turkish borders," Erdoğan said in the group meeting of his party on Tuesday.
The hundreds of thousands are surely no one but the YPG and PYD members and the weapon providers are even better known. Erdoğan's emphasis that Turkey will never be silent against any kind of terrorism shows Ankara's unchanged stance in the region.
"The only target of the terrorist PKK's Syrian wings is Turkey. Those who put a reward on the heads of [PKK] terrorists only deceive themselves by having relations with its Syrian wings," stressed Erdoğan.
As a result, Ankara held a five-hour National Security Council (MGK) meeting Tuesday evening and released a statement saying that Ankara will not remain unresponsive in the face of the U.S.' ongoing support for the PKK's Syrian affiliates and its attempts to protect the terrorist groups.
It was highlighted in the statement that no fait accompli will be allowed in Syria and that the right to self-defense will be exercised in the face of threats posed by the YPG. As the MGK meeting stated, Ankara has called the Trump administration's bluff on YGP terrorism and officially declared that it will never stop fighting against terrorist enclaves near its borders.