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Turkish Parliament Considers Motion to Extend Military Operations in Syria

Turkish Parliament Considers Motion to Extend Military Operations in Syria

Thursday, 21 October, 2021 - 07:30
A Turkish soldier walks near Turkish military vehicles in Hazano near Idlib. (Reuters file photo)

The Turkish presidency has submitted a motion to the parliament to extend the authority granted to the president to launch cross-border military operations in northern Iraq and Syria for two years starting from Oct. 30.

The risks and threats to national security caused by the ongoing developments and conflicts in the areas near Turkey’s southern border are “constantly escalating,” said the motion signed by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

“Terrorist organizations, especially the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), the People’s Protection Units (YPG), the largest component of the US-backed Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), and ISIS, whose elements are present in areas near Turkey’s border with Syria, continue their activities against our country, national security and people.”

The YPG continues to carry out “terrorist activities in Syria,” it added, noting that Ankara has taken measures that serve its national interests to maintain stability and calm in the areas where its forces carry out operations.

The presidency pointed to the ongoing risks and threats targeting activities aimed at establishing stability and security as part of the “Astana Process” in northwest Syria’s Idlib province.

It further underscored the importance of taking the necessary measures in light of these developments.

“This comes in line with our rights to prevent terrorism from undermining the territorial integrity of Syria and Iraq and creating an illegal fait accompli in the field and counter all kinds of dangers, threats, and actions that may affect our national security,” the motion added.

Turkey attaches great importance to maintaining stability, national unity and territorial integrity in Syria and Iraq, it stressed.

The continued presence of PKK and ISIS elements in Iraq and the terror attempts based on ethnicity constitute a direct threat to regional peace and stability and to our country’s security, the motion read.

Meanwhile, Turkey is preparing for possible further military action against the SDF in northern Syria if talks on the issue with the US and Russia fail, officials said.

Erdogan said this week Ankara was determined to eliminate threats originating in northern Syria and that a Kurdish YPG militia attack that killed two Turkish police officers was “the final straw.”

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