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George Soros has called on Europe to side with Turkey on the issue of Putin's war crimes in Syria.

In an article published by the Financial Times, Soros criticized Putin for his support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, whom he calls the most barbarian ruler in the world since Joseph Stalin. 

According to Soros, Turkey is the only country to use military force to protect civilians trapped in Assad and his Russian ally in Idlib. He admits that Turkey did not dare to attack Russia directly, because the Russian Air Force is stronger than the Turkish. Thus, Turkey decided to retaliate against Assad’s forces with the help of military drones.

“In 2014, I urged Europe to wake up to the threat that Russia was posing to its strategic interests, albeit in a different context and geography. Russia had invaded Ukraine knowing that Europe would seek to avoid any confrontation with Moscow,” he said. “Yet what is happening in Idlib now is following the same pattern: Europe is evading a confrontation with Russia over its Syria policy when it should be standing up to it. By focusing on the refugee crisis that Russia has created, Europe is addressing the symptom and not the cause.”

“A Europe that is set on limiting the inflow of refugees must concede that Turkey has already borne the brunt of housing the millions of Syrians displaced from their country. Turkey already houses 3.5m Syrian refugees in its territory. It cannot absorb the additional million that Mr Assad and Mr Putin are pushing towards its borders.”

According to him, Europe should not forget how Turkey can also treat its own people, for example, the use of force against the Kurds. “But with respect to Syria at least, Turkey deserves Europe’s support,” he said. “Europe should therefore seek to bolster Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s negotiating position with Mr Putin in trying to reach a cease fire that would preserve a “safe zone” in Idlib for Syrian refugees. I hope that this would also put Mr Putin’s war crimes at the centre of the European conversation.”

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