Turkey’s military operation in Syria: Latest updates

Ankara, Oct 11: Turkey’s defense ministry announced that more than 150 Kurdish fighters were killed as Turkish troops launched airstrikes and unleashed artillery shelling on Syrian towns and villages.The offensive was launched on Wednesday, just days after US President Donald Trump announced that US troops would pull back from the area, prompting a storm of criticism.

Turkey’s state-run news agency said Turkey-allied Syrian opposition fighters have “cleared of terror” two villages across the border in Syria (no more Syrian Kurdish fighters in villages).

US President Donald Trump tweeted, “We defeated 100% of the ISIS Caliphate and no longer have any troops in the area under attack by Turkey, in Syria. We did our job perfectly! Now Turkey is attacking the Kurds, who have been fighting each other for 200 years….”

“….We have one of three choices: Send in thousands of troops and win Militarily, hit Turkey very hard Financially and with Sanctions, or mediate a deal between Turkey and the Kurds!,” Trump said.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg urged Turkey to show “restraint” as the country continued its offensive.

In a news conference in Athens, Stoltenberg called on Turkey to ensure its actions in the region were “measured and proportionate.”

During a press conference with Greece’s Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis at Maximos Mansion in Athens, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said the offensive would add difficulty in finding a political solution to end Syria’s long civil war.

Russia accuses US of ‘demographic engineering’ in Syria
Turkey’s operation was a result of “demographic engineering” that was carried out by member-countries of the US-led international coalition in Syria, Russian Permanent Representative to the UN Vassily Nebenzya said at the international body’s headquarters in New York.

Nebenzya told reporters that the coalition was “reaping the fruit” of their demographic policies.

“We are encouraging the Kurds to engage in dialogue with the Syrian government, but as you know they preferred other protectors,” he added.

Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said his country’s operation would not exceed more than 30km (20 miles) deep into Syria.

“When we go 30km deep in the safe zone, terror there will be removed,” he told CNN Turk, referring to the presence of Kurdish fighters considered by Ankara as “terrorists”,

Cavusoglu also said Turkey had the right to use the air space over Syria as part of its campaign and that the “air space does not belong to the United States”.

Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu speaks to the media during a joint news conference with Algeria’s Foreign Minister Sabri Boukadoum, in Algiers.

Turkey claims 174 ‘terrorists’ killed in offensive
Turkey’s Defence Ministry said 174 “terrorists” were “neutralised” in its cross-border military offensive.

The ministry tweeted that the number included 19 alleged fighters killed in an air raid on a shelter used by the YPG group in Ras al-Ain.

UK has “serious concerns” over Turkey military action in Syria: FM

Saudi condemns Turkey’s “aggression” in Syria: ministry
Saudi Arabia condemned on Wednesday the aggression launched by the Turkish army on northeast Syria, an official at the foreign ministry said.

The foreign ministry official said that the Turkish aggression is a blatant violation of the unity, independence and sovereignty of the Syrian territories.

Bahrain condemns Turkish military attack on northeastern Syria
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Bahrain strongly condemned the military attack by Turkey on areas in northeast of Syria, “which is a violation of the rules of international law and an attack on the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria.”

While supporting the call for an emergency meeting of the Arab League to take a unified Arab position toward this aggression.

The Foreign Ministry called on “the UN Security Council to accelerate its responsibilities in confronting this attack, in order to maintain peace and security and to provide a supportive atmosphere to continue efforts aimed at finding a peaceful solution in Syria.”

UAE condemns Turkish aggression in Syria
The United Arab Emirates condemned on Wednesday the Turkish aggression in northeast Syria, according to a tweet carried by the Emirates News Agency (WAM).

The UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation said that “this aggression represents a dangerous development and a flagrant and unacceptable aggression against the sovereignty of a brotherly Arab state in contravention of the rules of international law,” according to the statement.

The ministry affirmed the “UAE’s firm stance and rejection of all that affects the sovereignty of Arab national security and threatens international peace and security, warning of the consequences of this aggression on the unity and territorial integrity of Syria and the political process in it.”

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