President Erdoğan: "Turkey ready for ops east of Euphrates River in Syria"

  • 13:30 05 October 2019

President Erdoğan: "Turkey ready for ops east of Euphrates River in Syria"

Turkey is ready for the operations to establish a safe zone in Syria, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Saturday, ONA reports citing Yeni Safak.

"We've made our preparations, we've made our operation plans, given the necessary instructions," Erdoğan said, adding that Turkey would carry out air and ground actions and these could start "as soon as today or tomorrow".

Earlier on Friday, Turkey’s presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalın and the U.S. National Security Advisor Robert C. O’Brien discussed accelerating the establishment of the safe zone in northern Syria over the phone.

Turkish and U.S. military officials agreed on Aug. 7 to set up a safe zone in northern Syria and develop a peace corridor to facilitate the movement of displaced Syrians who want to return to their homeland.

Turkish leaders have said the U.S. is not doing enough to establish the zone, which could house some 2-3 million Syrians who fled the Syrian civil war since 2011.

Turkey currently hosts some 3.6 million Syrian refugees, more than any other country in the world. Ankara has so far spent $40 billion for the refugees, according to official figures.

In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK - listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU - has been responsible for the deaths of some 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants. The terrorist YPG is the PKK's Syrian branch.