Turkey said Thursday it does not need anyone's permission to attack terrorist groups in Syria, despite Iran’s explicit opposition to any military incursion.
Two days after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s summit in Tehran with his Russian and Iranian counterparts during which both Moscow and Tehran urged Turkey against a new military operation in northern Syria, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said, "We exchanged ideas, but we never asked and we never ask permission for our military operations."
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei told Erdogan that a new Turkish offensive would be “detrimental” to the region.
Highlighting Turkey’s disagreements with Iran and Russia over Syria, Çavuşoğlu said the two countries' support for the Syrian regime is unacceptable to Turkey. “What we say is important, what our president says is important," Çavuşoğlu said.
He said Turkey had paused operations against the YPG/PKK in the east of the Euphrates because both the US and Russia had committed to clear them from this region, adding that “Since this has not happened so far, these terrorists have started to increase attacks against our own lands from there, as well as continuing the attacks against the Syrians, the opposition, our soldiers, and our police. What would the US do in such a situation now? What would Russia do?"
Turkey refuted Iraqi claims Wednesday that it had attacked a mountain resort in Zakho in northern Dohuk province, killing eight and wounding another 23 people.
Turkey regularly carries out air strikes in northern Iraq and has sent commandos to support its offensives as part of a long-running campaign against outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and the Syrian Kurdish YPG militias. Ankara regards both as terrorist groups.