Turkey to expand operations in Northern Syria

President Erdogan said that if the US-led coalition was ready to act jointly, Turkey would do "whatever is necessary'' against the Islamic State group in Raqqa.

Published:October 23, 2016 2:11 am
Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey Syria, al-Bab, Manbij, Raqqa, Turkey syria IS, Syria Islamic State, news, latest news, world news, international news, Turkey news Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey “had no choice” but to enter al-Bab, despite criticism from the international community, “because we need to prepare an area purged from terrorism. The same goes for Manbij.” (source: AP)

Turkey’s president says the country will be expanding its operations in north Syria, including entering the cities of al-Bab, Manbij and Raqqa. Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey “had no choice” but to enter al-Bab, despite criticism from the international community, “because we need to prepare an area purged from terrorism. The same goes for Manbij.”

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He added that if the US-led coalition was ready to act jointly, Turkey would do “whatever is necessary” against the Islamic State group in Raqqa, but with the coalition forces and not with Syrian Kurdish militants. Turkish jets attacked Kurdish militia targets north of Aleppo late on Wednesday.

Turkey regards the Syrian Kurds an extension of its own outlawed Kurdish insurgency, but the US considers them the most effective ground force in the fight against the IS group.