MADRID, 11 Oct. (EUROPE PRESS) –
The president of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, stressed on Friday that Ankara will not stop his military offensive against Kurdish forces in northeastern Syria, regardless of criticism and requests in this regard to the country's authorities.
“We are receiving threats from left and right to stop this path. I told (US President Donald) Trump and I tell the rest … We will not back down,” he said.
“The West and the United States accuse us of killing the Kurds. The Kurds are our brothers. Our fight is against the terrorist groups,” he said, as reported by the local newspaper 'Daily Sabah'.
Thus, he reiterated that “the anti-terrorist operation aims to protect the rights of all peoples in northern Syria: Arabs, Kurds, Yazidis and Chaldeans, not dividing Syria.”
“During the long period of the fight against terrorism we have given thousands of martyrs from among our security forces and innocent citizens,” he said, as collected by the Turkish state news agency, Anatolia.
Erdogan has indicated that the country “has witnessed a barbarism that did not hesitate to attack children, babies, schools and libraries” and has argued that “there is no peace without security or development without peace”.
The offensive, called 'Operation Peace Spring' by the Turkish authorities, began with aerial and artillery bombardments, and then went on to a ground operation.
The offensive began days after Trump took a 180-degree turn to the Washington alliance with the SDS, until then a key ally in the fight against the Islamic State, and withdrew his troops from the area to allow the operation.
Since then, most countries of the international community have charged against Ankara and have warned that the operation could have a negative impact against the fight against the jihadist group.
US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper called on Thursday his Turkish counterpart, Hulusi Akar, to “interrupt” the offensive to try to reduce tensions before an “irremediable” situation is reached.