Erdogan says Syria operation aimed at IS jihadists, Kurdish PYD

A Turkish army tank drives towards Syria in the Turkish border city of Karkamis on August 24, 2016
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

The Turkish operation inside Syrian territory is aimed not just against jihadists but also Kurdish militia and should permanently put an end to problems on the border, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Wednesday. "From 4:00 am (0100 GMT) our forces began an operation against the Daesh (IS) and PYD (Kurdish Democratic Union Party) terror groups that threaten our country in northern Syria," Erdogan said in a speech in Ankara. Turkey considers the PYD and its People's Protection Units (YPG) militia to be terror groups bent on carving out an autonomous region in Syria, although they are key allies of the United States in the fight against IS. He added the move was aimed at "putting an end" to problems on the border after repeated rocket fire from IS-held regions in Syria and a deadly suicide bombing on a Kurdish wedding at the weekend in the city of Gazinantep that killed 54. "We have said 'enough is enough' and there needs to be a putting an end to this. This process began from 4:00 am. This now needs to be resolved," said Erdogan. "Nobody can see the Syrian issue independent from Turkey's internal affairs," he said, adding the civil war had been responsible for a string of attacks inside Turkey. "The road to solving the terror problem passes through a solution to problems in Syria and in Iraq... Turkey will overcome threats originating from Syria." As he spoke, Turkey's state-run Anadolu news agency reported that pro-Ankara rebels had already penetrated three kilometres (two miles) inside Syria towards the IS-held town of Jarabulus. Quoting military sources, it said they were supported by Turkish artillery fire and from the air.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting