UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY) — Turkey will not change its policy under the influence of threats, said Vice President Fuat Oktay amid a statement by US President Donald Trump, who threatened to destroy the Turkish economy.
Trump earlier in his Twitter threatened to “destroy the Turkish economy” if Ankara, in his opinion, “crosses the boundaries” of what is permitted. According to him, Turkey, Europe and other countries “must keep an eye on captured ISIS fighters and their families.”
“Our message to the international community is clear: Turkey is not a country that acts under the influence of threats. We ourselves will determine our path and ourselves will cut the umbilical cord when we see fit. We will never allow the creation of a terrorist corridor near our borders, no matter what it costs us. Our position will remain unchanged to ensure the tranquility of our borders and the future of the Syrian brothers, as well as regarding the territorial integrity of Syria and its political unity,” said Oktay, speaking in Ankara.
According to him, 370 thousand Syrian refugees have already returned home to areas in the north-west of Syria, where Turkey carried out operations “Shield of the Euphrates” and “Olive Branch”.
“Now it’s the turn to create a security zone east of the Euphrates. Turkey will replace the terrorists who threaten our country from the southern borders and will also facilitate the return of Syrian refugees to their homeland,” the Turkish vice president added.
Washington previously stated that the US military would not participate in Turkey’s military operation in northern Syria. The White House release, released after a telephone conversation between U.S. President Donald Trump and his Turkish counterpart Tayyip Erdogan, said that Turkey would now be responsible for all ISIS militants captured over the past two years after the defeat of a terrorist group by the United States.
Erdogan said a decision on a Turkish operation in northern Syria east of the Euphrates could be made in the coming days. He added that the purpose of the operation will be to cleanse the Syrian border with Turkey from the self-defense forces of the Syrian Kurds, create a security zone there, and place the Syrian refugees in Turkey.
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