Iran slams Turkey's threat to launch incursion into Syria, urges dialogue

May 30, 2022 - 22:25

TEHRAN- Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Saeed Khatibzadeh, said on Saturday that Tehran rejects military action against regional nations, emphasizing that the best way to allay Turkey's security worries is via dialogue rather than another foray into Syria.

The statements were made following Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's vow to begin a fresh military operation in Syria with the ostensible goal of safeguarding Turkey's southern border.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran opposes any military action and use of force on the territory of other countries with the aim of resolving disputes…, and considers it a violation of the territorial integrity and national sovereignty of those countries,” Khatibzadeh underlined.

According to Khatibzadeh, using force will exacerbate the situation, heighten tensions, and result in humanitarian disasters in the region.

While the Islamic Republic recognizes Turkey's security concerns, he said the best way to address them is via dialogue and respect for bilateral agreements with neighbors, as well as agreements established within the Astana peace process to end the Syrian crisis.

The spokesman went on to say that the Islamic Republic is willing to help “prevent the escalation of the crisis and any conflict whose victims will be only defenseless civilians.”

Erdogan said the military operation's goal would be to restart Turkish efforts to construct a 30-kilometer safe zone along the border with Syria after a cabinet meeting on Monday.

“We will soon take new steps regarding the incomplete portions of the project we started on the 30-km deep safe zone we established along our southern border,” he noted.

Infringing on Syria's sovereignty and territorial integrity, Turkey has deployed military in the Arab country.

In October 2019, Ankara-backed militants were sent to northeastern Syria as Turkish armed troops started a long-threatened cross-border incursion in a declared attempt to drive militants from the People's Protection Units (YPG) out of border regions.

Ankara sees the YPG as a terrorist group linked to Turkey's own Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which has been fighting for an autonomous Kurdish territory since 1984.

Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad and other top officials have stated that Damascus will respond to Turkish forces' ongoing ground attack in Syria's northern provinces using all lawful methods at their disposal.

Damascus has also emphatically rejected Erdogan's plan for the creation of a "safe zone" in the occupied northern portion of the Arab country, calling it an "aggressive, colonial act."

The Syrian Foreign Ministry asserted in recent letters to UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and UN Security Council rotating president Linda Thomas-Greenfield that Ankara wants to establish a volatile region within Syria and continue to support, arm, and command terror groups against the Syrian country.

Turkey's actions on Syrian territory, according to the statement, are unlawful and have no legal impact, and even amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity.


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