Erdogan threatens new Syria military operation to 'cleanse border of terrorists'

Erdogan threatens new Syria military operation to 'cleanse border of terrorists'
Turkey has vowed to intervene militarily in Syria if promises to curb the influence of "terrorists" in the country are not fulfilled.
2 min read
04 October, 2020
Erdogan warned Turkey would intervene to 'cleanse' its borders [Getty]
Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatened to intervene in Syria to confront "terrorist armed groups" if no action is taken to curb their influence.

Erdogan's warning came during a speech delivered by video call to inaugurate the new Reyhanli Dam, southern Turkey.

"We will go ourselves to cleanse the hideouts of terrorism in Syria if the promises made to us are not fulfilled," the Turkish leader said.

"We have eliminated the terrorist corridor established along our border and have proven that our Syrian brothers are not alone," he added.

"The Turkish presence in Syria will continue until stability is achieved along our southern border with Syria," he said.

The remarks came days after Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem used his address to the UN General Assembly on Saturday to lash out at Turkey.

"There are those who invest in, support and fuel terrorism moving terrorists from one region to another and from one country to another all in the service of their suspicious agendas," Walid al-Moallem told an audience.

"Of course when it comes to sponsors and financiers of terrorism the current Turkish regime reigns supreme. The Turkish regime is one of the main sponsors of terror in Syria and the region.

"It has facilitated the passage of tens of thousands of foreign terrorists into Syria and continues to provide all forms of support to Al-Nusra Front and its affiliated terrorist groups that have massacred Syrians."

In a pre-recorded statement, al-Moallem who is also Deputy Prime Minister was scathing in his criticism of the Turkish government.

"The current Turkish regime has become a rogue, an outlaw regime under international law. Its policies and actions which threaten the security and stability of the whole region must be stopped," al-Moallem said.

"We want a secure and prosperous future free from terrorism, occupation and inhumane sanctions. We want a future that respects international law and promotes dialogue and understanding between nations.

"We need a United Nations that upholds the principles and purposes of its Charter and unequivocally stands against wars and war mongers."

Meanwhile, Turkey has got its hands into the neighbouring Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, sending at least 1,200 combatants from pro-Ankara Syrian factions to fight for the Azeris.

At least 64 pro-Turkey Syrian rebel fighters have been killed in clashes between Armenian and Azerbaijani forces, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

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