“Turkey is Fighting against the Terrorist Organisation in Afrin, not the Kurds”

“Turkey is Fighting against the Terrorist Organisation in Afrin, not the Kurds”

Speaking at the award ceremony of ACI, President Erdogan said: “Turkey is fighting against the terrorist organisation in Afrin, not the Kurds. You will see very soon that the biggest thank you will come to us from our Kurdish, Arab and Turkmen brothers and sisters once the terrorist organisation’s oppression is removed.”

Pointing out that the Turkish security forces have been carrying out one of the biggest fights of the country’s recent past in the speech he delivered at the 54th Award Ceremony of Ankara Chamber of Industry, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said: “We had stabbed the first dagger into the terrorist corridor that has been sought to be established along our borders and that has posed a clear threat to our national unity and territorial integrity with the Operation Euphrates Shield. Now some writers, columnists and etc. are trying to distort the target of the operation especially by declaring that they have been carried out against Kurds. First of all I want to make it clear that we have no problem with our Kurdish citizens. It is not a matter of a Kurdish corridor but the elimination of the terrorist corridor.”


President Erdoğan continued his speech as follows: “Our determination on this issue is plain as day. What did we say? Afrin will be dealt with. There is no stepping back from Afrin. We discussed this with our Russian friends, we are in agreement and we also discussed it with other coalition forces and the United States. However, we were not able to convince the US. What was that? We asked them, ‘Why are you fighting against DAESH terrorist organisation with another terrorist organisation?’ ‘Why are you fighting against it with terrorist organisations such as PYD, YPG and PKK?’ We told them to do it with their strategic partner Turkey. We are ready for it. Let us put them aside and not strengthen terrorism. But they told us that their generals informed them that the team or the troops that Turkey assigned for that effort were not adequate. I told them that they were wrong, their generals were wrong. I told that to Mr. Trump in the bilateral meeting and the interdelegational meeting but they would not listen.”

Mentioning that the US brought and distributed five thousand trucks of weapons ranging from armoured carriers to ammunitions to the terrorist organisations in the region, President Erdoğan added that there are also some 20 American bases in Northern Syria.


Underlining that Turkey doesn’t have eyes on even one inch of anyone’s land, President Erdoğan noted that Turkey’s primary objective with this operation is to ensure its own national security as well as to contribute to Syria’s territorial integrity and the safety of Syrian people’s lives and properties. Pointing out that in some parts of Syria a structure that has nothing to do with the historical, cultural and sociological realities of the people of the region has been sought to be built, President Erdoğan emphasized that that structure poses a crucial threat to Syria, Iraq, Iran and the whole region as well as to Turkey. Mentioning that Turkey is hosting 3.5 million Syrians at the moment, President Erdoğan said: “Just as we have now the control of two thousand square metres of land in Northern Syria, in Jarabulus, al-Rai and al-Bab and just as 100 thousand people, people of those lands returned to and settled in Jarabulus, the same will take place in Afrin, too and with God’s permission in Idlib, too. Thus, our Syrian brothers and sisters in our country will be able to return to their homes, to their land and to their native country.”

President Erdoğan underlined that those who have criticised Turkey for the legitimate operations it has been carrying out does not care about the future and the solutions to the problems of Syrian people and added: “Others might not care about the suffering of the 13 million Syrians -six million of which are abroad- but we do. Because, they, Arabs, Turkmens and Kurds alike, are all our brothers and sisters.”


Emphasizing that Turkey is not fighting against Kurds but the terrorist organisation there, President Erdoğan said: “The 55 % of Afrin is Arabs, some 35 % of it is Kurds and the rest is Turkmens. There is a terrorist organisation there. You will see very soon that the biggest thank you will come to us from our Kurdish, Arab and Turkmen brothers and sisters once the terrorist organisation’s oppression is removed in Afrin.”


President Erdoğan mentioned that the Afrin Operation will end once its goals have been achieved just like the Operation Euphrates Shield and referring to the US’s statement that “the duration of the operation should be clear and it should not last long”, President Erdoğan said: “Then I ask the US: Was the duration of your operation in Afghanistan clear? When will it end? You had entered Iraq before we came to power. Is the duration over in Iraq? You are still there. And now you have entered here with the coalition forces. Can there be a duration for it? It is not maths, it is war. How can you ask such a question? It is impossible to understand them. Whenever we finish our work, we will draw back. We are not eager to stay. And you should know that we do not have any intention to get permission for it.”

Emphasizing that those who did not call for a United Nations Security Council meeting while the separatist terrorist organisation was brutally murdering the people in Afrin who were not tied to it do not ever have the right to attempt to do it now, President Erdoğan underlined that Turkey does not have any objective of invading anywhere.

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