Turkish army units will maintain their presence in northern Syria until militants from the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group (outlawed in Russia) are fully driven out of this region, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said on Friday.
“We are protecting our country’s territorial integrity and Syria’s unity,” he declared. “Our army will continue the operation (near Jarablus – TASS) until terrorists are completely driven out of this region.” Yildirim added that the Turkish armed forces “are providing logistics support to the Free Syrian Army forces” and are protecting Turkey’s border.
Ankara declared on Wednesday morning that the Turkish army had begun an operation into the territory of neighboring Syria. Turkish armor and ground troops, including commando units, in cooperation with the allied armed groups of the Syrian opposition crossed the border into Syria. Ankara said the purpose of its military operation is the struggle against the Islamic State terrorist group and Kurdish militias.
Damascus condemned the operation saying it regards such actions as an outright violation of Syria’s sovereignty.