As Turkey’s air force bombed the Afrin canton in northern Syria, causing growing civilian casualties in a region that is home to hundreds of thousands of refugees, British Prime Minister Theresa May signed a new deal worth £100 million with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on January 28 to help Turkey develop new fighter jets.
By contrast, the socialist leader of the Labour Party opposition, Jeremy Corbyn, sent a message to a protest against Turkey’s invasion that expressed his solidarity with Afrin and the Kurdish people.
In his statement to a London protest on January 27, Corbyn said: “I send my solidarity to the Kurdish people of Syria and all over the world. What is urgently needed is a ceasefire, de-escalation and a negotiated political solution — not further escalations and interventions in a conflict that has already led to huge numbers of deaths and refugees.
“Multiple interventions by outside powers have increased the suffering and destruction and intensified tensions in the region. Turkey's air and ground assault in the Afrin region is already causing civilian casualties including among refugees from other parts of Syria.”