Turkey may intervene in Idlib if attacks continue: Erdoğan
Turkey will not be a mere spectator to Syria’s Idlib province if the situation in the region is not resolved immediately, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said, signaling a new military intervention.
“We will not allow the regime’s cruelty towards its people, which is attacking and causing bloodshed,” Erdoğan said at a meeting with ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) provincial heads.
Syria was also “continuously threatening our country with migration,” he stated. “Turkey in complete sincerity wants Syria’s stability and security, and to this end, we will not shy away from doing whatever is necessary including using military force.”
He emphasized Turkey “could not stand by as mere spectators as new threats come towards our borders.”
Hundreds of thousands of Syrians have been displaced in Idlib since December after months of bombardment in the last rebel-held region in Syria’s northwest.
Many of them have fled towards the Turkey-Syria border, where the president has said Ankara is building homes in a bid to prevent further migration. The president underlined that Turkey could not handle a fresh influx of migrants.
Erdoğan said the only solution for Syria was a political process involving all citizens. He slammed unnamed countries who “give courage to the regime” in a bid to ensure the crisis continues.
Turkey to never recognize US’ Middle East plan
Turkey will never “recognize and accept” the U.S.’s peace plan for the Middle East, the president also said.
“This plan aims for the annexation of the occupied Palestine territories,” Erdoğan stated.
Jerusalem is a “red line” for Turkey, Erdoğan noted. He added that Jerusalem is the key to world peace as it has been for thousands of years
Turkey says Trump's Mideast plan aims to legitimize occupation of Palestine
On Jan. 28, U.S. President Donald Trump released his plan to end the Israeli-Palestinian dispute at the White House alongside Netanyahu, with no Palestinian officials present.
The Middle East peace plan announced supports the Israeli position on nearly all of the most contentious issues in the decades-old conflict.
During his speech, Erdoğan stressed that such a “rogue state” of Israel, which “executes innocents on the streets,” can never be credible for Turkey.
“Leaving Jerusalem entirely in Israel’s bloody claws will be the greatest evil for all humanity,” he added.
The president blasted some Arab countries for backing a Middle East peace plan unveiled by the United States, condemning it as “treason.”
“Some Arab countries that support such a plan commit treason against Jerusalem, as well as against their people, and more importantly against all humanity,” he stated.
“Saudi Arabia in particular, you are silent. When will you break your silence? You look at Amman, Bahrain and Abu Dhabi are the same,” said the Turkish president. “Shame on you! Shame on you! How will those hands that applaud [the plan] give an account of this treacherous step?” Erdoğan said.
Earthquake in eastern Turkey
Regarding the deadly earthquake that jolted Turkey's eastern Elazığ province last week, Erdoğan conveyed that seven of the injured people remained in intensive care and their condition is out of danger.
“Turkey has carried out its most rapid and effective disaster response in [the country's] history following this earthquake,” the president added.
Stressing that donations made for quake victims have been allocated for the people in need, Erdoğan said that Turkey spent a "significant amount of money from the national budget."
Turkey has been hit by a series of earthquakes since the start of 2020 as a 5.4 magnitude quake jolted western province of Manisa on Jan. 22 and the capital Ankara was rattled by a 4.5 magnitude quake on Jan. 23.
The worst of the quakes took place on Jan. 24 when Elazığ was hit by a 6.8 magnitude earthquake which claimed 41 lives and injured over thousands.
Rescuers find last quake victim; death toll hits at least 41
The tremors were also felt in neighboring countries, including Georgia and Syria.