Forces from all over the world are gathering for a miniature world war for control of the northern Syrian province of Aleppo, and even though world powers have negotiated for a pause to be implemented this week, the conflict is still growing, according to reports from Turkey.
"There's a spiral of insecurity here that is not being managed," political consultant Salman Shaikh, who is engaged in mediation efforts in the Syrian war told The Washington Post
"What we are seeing is a classic, really complicated balance-of-power struggle that could become a very dangerous situation."
The forces include Russian warplanes and militias from Iraq and Lebanon, Syrian rebels, with the backing of the United States, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar fighting back, and Kurdish forces extending territories, reports The Washington Post.
Meanwhile, the Islamic State is seizing villages, and even though the pause in fighting is looming, Turkey fired at Kurds on Sunday. Over the weekend, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev warned that the world had already descended into "a new Cold War."
The battles have high stakes, including allowing President Bashar al-Assad's regime to strike back at the rebels fighting his rule.
The offensive could shore up Russia as a regional power in the Middle East, and tens of thousands of Syrians are heading north to escape the battles, but are being blocked by Turkey.
Vice President Joe Biden has appealed to Turkey to halt its shelling, emphasizing the need to de-escalate the situation, the White House said Sunday, while the State Department is calling on the Kurds to refrain from seizing new territory.
However, just hours later, Turkey resumed the airstrikes and the Kurds seized another village.
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