Turkey has once again called for creating safe zones in Syria and military intervention of its troops to Iraq.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (Photo: Getty Images / AFP / Adem Altan)
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that he welcomes the US missile strike on an airbase in Syria, but does not think that it is sufficient and expects continuation of the operation, the NTV TV-channel reported on Friday.
“We welcome this operation. I have been monitoring it since four o’clock in the morning. But we do not think this is sufficient. I wish this step of the US to be just the beginning. Now we will always protect the peaceful inhabitants of Syria. We use all our capabilities to protect the oppressed,” Erdogan said at a protest in Hatay on Friday.
He also added that the time to create a no-fly zone of 4,000-5,000 square kilometers in Syria had come, as Ankara has been long insisting.
Earlier, right after the US missile strike in Syria, spokesman for the Turkish President, Ibrahim Kalin, called on the international community to take steps to create a security zone and a no-fly zone in the Syrian Arab Republic.
“[The US missile strike on the Syrian base] is an adequate response to crimes of the regime [of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad]. This is important in terms of the fact that his attacks on the civilians did not go unanswered. It is urgently needed to move to creation of a security zone and a no-fly zone to prevent further crimes. The international community must take joint actions,” the NTV TV-channel quoted Kalin’s words.
Also on Friday, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told the Al-Jazeera broadcaster that Turkish troops are ready to enter the territory of Iraq in order to fight against terrorist groups, including the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which is considered as a terrorist organization by Ankara.
Spokesman for the Iraqi government Saad Hadithi told the Sputnik news agency that Baghdad opposes any military operations of Turkey in Iraq and hopes that Ankara will withdraw its troops after the victory over the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group in the country.
“The Iraqi government will not allow any external side to carry out military operations on the ground, including Turkey or any other state. This is a clear and unchanged position,” Hadithi said.
The spokwsman noted that Baghdad expects Turkey to fulfill its promise and withdraw its troops from Iraq after the elimination of the IS. “When the territories are cleared from IS militants, there will be no reasons for their presence [in Iraq],” Hadithi added.