Turkey to establish security zone on Syria border

Turkey to establish security zone on Syria border
Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister announced his country's intention to establish an integrated security system on the Syrian borders to step up the fight against terrorism.
2 min read
23 July, 2015
Turkey's new security system will tighten border security measures [Anadolu]
Turkey will establish an "integrated security system" to protect its borders with Syria, its deputy prime minister said after a cabinet meeting on Wednesday. 

At a press conference in Ankara after the meeting, Bulent Arinc said that the security system would aim to prevent members of the Islamic State group (IS) from crossing the borders.

The new system would also tighten border security measures, he added, particularly the borders with parts of Syria under IS control.

However, the new security measures should not affect the crossing of the borders for humanitarian reasons, he said.

Criticism of Turkey unjustified

Arinc accused certain parties of "launching a powerful campaign of incitement to mobilise public opinion against the Turkish government, alleging it was not fighting the IS hard enough."

He added Turkey had declared the IS a terrorist group, and was determined to fight it.

Turkey has declared the IS a terrorist group, and is determined to fight it.

Since the beginning of this year, he said, Turkey had detained nearly 600 people suspected of having links to the IS, arresting and imprisoning 102 of them.

Arinc said senior Turkish officials had met with a visiting US delegation of civil and military officials headed by the president's special envoy John Allen, who was coordinating the international alliance against the IS.

Arinc said the talks resulted in an agreement, the details of which Arinc did not disclose. However, he said the two sides agreed they would carry out joint operations in the future.

"Our security force and intelligence apparatuses are taking the necessary measures to fight the IS and all extremist and terrorist groups in Syria," he said.

Arinc also commented on the assassination of two Turkish police officers in their homes earlier today, saying it was a "crime committed by a terrorist group."

He emphasised that Turkish security and intelligence were carrying out extensive investigations to find the perpetrators of the attack and find out how they were linked to the PKK.

"Some media outlets said the PKK killed the two police officers", he said, pledging to "respond effectively to the crime."

He also said that as of July 2015, the number that had joined the IS in Syria was almost 1,000, while the number joining the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) in Syria ranged from 1,500 to 2,000.