Turkish Vice President Fuat Oktay said the Syrian authorities will be responsible for the deaths of Turkish soldiers in the Syrian province of Idlib.
“The head of the terrorist state Al-Assad (Syrian President Bashar al-Assad), who will go down in history as a war criminal, and employees of his regime will pay a high price for this treacherous attack”, – Turkish media quote the vice-president as saying.
Earlier it was reported that Syrian air strikes on Idlib killed 33 Turkish soldiers. On Friday night, the Turkish military retaliated with air and ground strikes against positions of Syrian government forces.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said at a meeting of the ruling party’s parliamentary faction on Wednesday that Ankara has no intention of making concessions on Idlib and will continue to build up its military presence in the Syrian province.
“Supporters of Bashar al-Assad must necessarily retreat beyond the line of contact defined by the Sochi agreements. The time allotted to Assad is running out”, – the Turkish president said.
Earlier in February, Erdogan said Assad’s forces should retreat behind the line of the Idlib de-escalation zone, promising otherwise to push back Syrian troops.
The Turkish army has deployed 12 observation posts in the Idlib zone of de-escalation, some of which have been at its rear since the Syrian army began its offensive against terrorist positions in the province.