MAP: Turkish Safe Zone line (October 23)

This is an interactive map of the 30-kilometer demilitarized zone to be entered by “Russian military police and Syrian border guards” of the Turkish safe zone in northeast Syria, as well the 10-kilometer line of “joint Russian-Turkish patrols” according to the Oct 22 Memorandum of Understanding between the Russian Federation and Turkey (in English and Russian).

Note that all of the M5 highway is included with the exception of Ayn Issa (which technically is outside the zone and is occupied by Syrian government troops). Tell Tamer, another town with government troops inside, also falls just outside the zone.

Important sites located inside the zone include Sharaqraq, Qantari, and Turkmen Ali Beyli. The “greater” safe zone, which represents the full Turkish claim of 32 kilometers south of the entire border from Jarabulus to Iraq, also includes the Qara Qawzak bridge, which would mean people in the Autonomous Administration would have only one route crossing the Euphrates River (the Tishrin Dam bridge) to travel to and from Manbij. Even under the “greater” safe zone, however, the Autonomous Administration would maintain control over the Arab towns near the line such as Sarrin, Jurniyah, Mahmudli, Khunayz, al-Hishah, Tall Siman, and Qaltah.

The Sochi Memorandum also states that “All YPG elements and their weapons will be removed from Manbij and Tal Rifat.” This would significantly alter the balance of power in Aleppo province, forcing residents in the area to choose between living in Syrian government territory or Turkish-backed rebel control.

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