Turkish President Erdogan seeks to reassure Emmanuel Macron on Syria operation
Ankara: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Sunday sought to reassure France’s Emmanuel Macron over the operation of the Turkish military inside Syria, telling the French chief it was aimed in opposition to “terror components” and that Ankara had no eye on Syrian territory.
Turkey on January 20 launched the “Olive Department” operation in opposition to Syrian Kurdish Folks’s Safety Models (YPG) militia which Ankara sees as a terror group and a menace to Turkey.
Macron had incensed Turkish officers by saying in a newspaper interview final week that France would have a “actual downside” with the marketing campaign if it turned out to be an “invasion operation”.
Turkey’s Western allies don’t classify the YPG as a terror group and have labored intently with its fighters within the battle in opposition to Islamic State (IS) jihadists.
However in phone talks, Erdogan advised Macron that Turkey had “no eye on the territory of one other nation”, the state-run Anadolu information company reported.
He added that the operation was “geared toward purging” the world of Afrin in northern Syria of “terror components” such because the YPG.
Erdogan has sought to construct a powerful relationship with Macron regardless of rocky ties with the EU, visiting Paris in January for talks.
However after Macron’s remarks final week, International Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu responded that France had no proper “to offer us classes” on a cross-border offensive, pointing to France’s personal colonial historical past.