Kurdish fighters of the YPG in Afrin bid farewell to comrades killed during clashes against ISIS. Photo: ARA News
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Urfa, Turkey – Turkey’s National Security Council held a meeting on Monday and discussed the possibility of Turkish military intervention in northern Syria.
Turkey looks into the possibility of displaying some 18,000 soldiers north of Syria’s Aleppo –in the area stretching from Jarabulus to Azaz.
“This is to ward off the risk of Islamic State on Bab as-Salama border crossing,” the Turkish Yeni Safak newspaper reported.
Local media leaked information from the political and military leadership in Turkey regarding the possible military intervention in neighboring Syria.
According to Dugan news agency, the Turkish political leadership –represented by President Receb Teyyib Erdogan and the Government of Ahmet Davutoglu– insists on direct ground intervention in northern Syria, in order to avert the risk of IS jihadists from Bab as-Salama border crossing, as well as providing support to the Syrian armed opposition ـــwhich is in conflict with IS and pro-Assad forces.
A safe zone with a depth of 30 km in northern Syria will be on the agenda of the Turkish authorities as well.
On the other hand, the military leadership refused any direct intervention, arguing that it will lead to a massive war intervened by Russia and Iran.
Speaking to ARA News, Kurdish lawyer and politician Ferid Hisso said that the proposed intervention comes in order to prevent linking Kurdish majority areas in northern Syria, “as the Kurdish gains in Syria raised concerns of Turkish officials, especially that Kurds are trying to link Afrin and Kobane with Qamishli.”
“Erdogan repeatedly emphasized that Turkey will not allow the establishment of a Kurdish autonomous entity north Syria. This is the real reason for Turkey’s intention to intervene,” Hisso said.
The Iranian Ambassador to Turkey, Ali Reza Bakdali, said on Sunday that Turkey and Iran are determined to cooperate in order to prevent the establishment of a potential Kurdish state in northern Syria.
Bakdali told reporters in Ankara that the expansion of Kurdish forces of the People’s Protection Units (YPG) on the borderline with Turkey, supported by the U.S.-led international coalition forces in northern Syria “is a conspiracy against the Turkish state”, calling on all actors in the region to intensify efforts to bring security and stability to Syria and to preserve its unity.
The Iranian Ambassador pointed out that Turkey and Iran have agreed on the principle of preserving the unity of the Syrian territory.
The Turkish military leadership clarified that any intervention in Syria will be limited to hitting the Islamic State group through providing logistical support, weapons and ammunition to the Syrian armed opposition.
Reporting by: Jan Nasro
Source: ARA News