Zarif says it is imperative to end incursion into Syria

October 16, 2019 - 19:5

TEHRAN – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has said it is “imperative” to end Turkey’s incursion into northern Syria.

“The imperative now is to end the incursion into #Syria & address all concerns through #ADANA,” Zarif wrote on his Twitter on Tuesday.

Zarif also suggested that “it is essential that the core principles of JUS IN BELLO are fully observed: distinction between civilians and combatant, & prohibition on inflicting unnecessary suffering.” 

(International humanitarian law, or jus in bello, is the law that governs the way in which warfare is conducted.) 

Turkey launched military operation against Syrian Kurdish fighters, known as the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), in northeast Syria on October 9.

In an interview with Turkey’s TRT World aired on October 10, Zarif said that the Syrian Army together with Turkey can guard the border.

“That’s a better way to achieve security,” he suggested.

“We do not believe that security can be achieved by invading Syria, by incursion into Syria. We have better options. We have offered better options to our Turkish friends like the Adana agreement. There is an Adana agreement between Turkey and Syria which is still valid. We can help bring together the Syrian Kurds, the Syrian government and Turkey so that the Syrian Army together with Turkey can guard the border with Turkey, together with Turkey,” Zarif explained.

Also in a post on his Twitter page on October 12, Zarif also said, “The Adana Agreement between Turkey and Syria—still valid—can be the better path to achieve security. #Iran can help bring together the Syrian Kurds, the Syrian Govt, and Turkey so that the Syrian Army together with Turkey can guard the border.”

Iranian MPs issued a statement on Monday condemning Turkey’s military attack on northeastern Syria.

“We, the representatives of Iran’s parliament, support the oppressed Syrian Kurds and expect the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, which supports the oppressed, to announce its support for the oppressed Syrian Kurds in various ways,” read the statement.

The statement also said, “Speaker of the parliament [Ali Larijani] will cancel his trip to Turkey in protest to the military attack.”

The MPs also condemned the international bodies’ silence over the attack.

The Iranian Foreign Ministry issued a statement on October 10 urging Turkey to immediately stop offensive and withdraw its forces from the region.

The statement said, “As it has been announced earlier, the Islamic Republic of Iran considers the current regional situation a consequence of extra-regional interferences, especially by the United States.”

During a press conference on Monday, President Hassan Rouhani said that Iran does not approve of Turkey’s military attack.

“Turkey has concerns about north of Syria and we accept them. We accept a country’s security concerns. Turkey is our friend. However, we do not accept the method it has chosen. This is not a good method. There exists better methods,” Rouhani stated.