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November 20, 2019
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Turkey says it has no plan of ground operation in Syria along with Saudi Arabia

ANKARA: Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has denied that Ankara and Saudi Arabia has any plan to carry out ground operation in Syria.

The foreign minister held a joint press conference here on Monday with Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni.

Cavusoglu discussed the disagreement between Turkey and the US regarding the Democratic Union Party’s (PYD) armed wing People’s Protection Units (YPG), and said that US Secretary of State John Kerry told Cavusoglu that, “the YPG is not trustworthy, thus there must be more action against DAESH.”

He reiterated that the PYD is a PKK affiliate, adding that all documents and evidence regarding PKK terrorists holding positions in the PYD have been provided to US authorities.

Cavusoglu said, “Following the recent bombing in Ankara, Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu directly shared information showing that the attack was carried out by the PYD. We have solid evidence that the PYD/YPG is a terrorist organization.

Asked whether Turkey and Saudi Arabia are jointly planning on ground operations in Syria, Cavusoglu said that there has been disinformation. Recalling that 65 countries established a coalition against DAESH in Iraq and Syria, he added that from the first meeting it was known that airstrikes would not be sufficient to halt DAESH activities throughout the region.

Minister Cavusoglu added that such an operation will not be carried out, neither by Turkey on its own nor with another country, and dismissed rumors of Turkey and Saudi Arabia preparing for a ground operation in Syria.