The wave of democratization, which began with the Jasmine Revolution in Tunisia, took down the authoritarian leaders of Egypt, Libya and Yemen. Whereas the uprising in Bahrain was crushed thanks to Saudi Arabia’s military intervention, Iran and Russia ensured the survival of Bashar Assad’s regime in Syria.
The March 5 agreement between Turkey and Russia put an end to the military confrontation in Idlib, Syria. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, shook hands on that deal to de-escalate what had become serious bilateral tensions. The 2018 Sochi agreement has thus been updated.
Turkey has been the main supporter of the Syrian opposition fighting the Bashar Assad regime. Ankara has also diligently protected innocent Syrian civilians living in the Idlib region. It has stood against the atrocities, the Assad regime attacks and the regime's main backers Russia and Iran. On one hand, Turkey has mobilized its deterrent military power in the region against the regime’s future attacks; on the other hand, Turkish officials and civil institutions initiated a campaign to provide food and shelter for civilians. Western countries have been reluctant to get involved in the humanitarian tragedy and security problem in the region.