Turkey wants joint ground operation into Syria

Turkey’s foreign minister says if there will be ground operation into Syria, it must be carried out jointly

Photo by: AA
Photo by: AA

Mevlut Cavusoglu, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkey attends the 2016 Munich Security Conference at the Bayerischer Hof hotel on February 12, 2016 in Munich, Germany.

Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Tuesday that Turkey, Saudi Arabia and some European allies want a ground operation in Syria, but there is no consensus in the coalition and a strategy for such an incursion has not been seriously debated.

"Some countries like us, Saudi Arabia and some other Western European countries have said that a ground operation is necessary ... But to expect this only from Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar is neither right nor realistic," Mevlut Cavusoglu said in an interview in Ankara.

"If such an operation is to take place, it has to be carried out jointly, like the [coalition] air strikes," he said.

"The coalition has not given this ground operation issue serious debate. There were opponents, and there were those who weren't going to take part but expressed a desire for Turkey or another country doing it." 

Previously, in a statement about a possible ground operation, the Turkish foreign minister had said that Turkey might partake in a ground operation with Saudi Arabia to fight against DAESH terrorist organisation in Syria.

During an interview on Feb. 13, Cavusoglu had signalled a ground operation by saying “In every coalition meeting, we say that an extensive, decisive strategy is needed in order to fight against DAESH."

"There must be a ground incursion too. If there is such a strategy, Turkey and Saudi Arabia may partake in a ground offensive.”

TRTWorld, Reuters