Syrian government condemns Turkey ahead of UN meeting

A Syrian foreign ministry official says Damascus calls on the UN Security Council to adopt a position in line with the body’s resolutions affirming a commitment to Syria’s sovereignty.
(Photo: George Ourfalian / AFP)
(Photo: George Ourfalian / AFP)

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – A Syrian foreign ministry official said Damascus condemns Turkey’s violations of its territories, the state news agency SANA reported on Monday.

The official said the Syrian government considers Turkey’s aggressive actions a “breach of its sovereignty and independence” that has been ongoing “for more than ten years.”

They added that Damascus calls on the UN Secretary-General and Security Council to “adopt a clear stance” regarding Ankara’s extraterritorial activities in Syria, “in line with” Security Council resolutions that affirm a commitment to Syria’s “sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity.”

World leaders are set to participate in the 76th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) session scheduled for next Tuesday. The session will reportedly mainly focus on the situation in Afghanistan and the COVID-19 pandemic.

Early September, the Syrian foreign ministry denied that Damascus was communicating or negotiating with Turkey on security issues after claims Syrian and Turkish intelligence leaders met in Baghdad.

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Turkey and Syria severed ties in 2011, shortly after the beginning of the Syrian civil war. Ankara has backed rebels opposing the Damascus-based government since the beginning of the civil war.

Between 2016 and 2019, Turkey launched three military operations in the northern Aleppo countryside, Afrin, and northern Hasakah province, aiming to prevent the emergence of a Kurdish autonomous region along its border.

Since then, Ankara and militant groups it backs have been controlling a large pocket of land in northwest Syria. They have also deployed troops in Idlib with the approval of Russia and Iran since 2017.

The Syrian government and the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) oppose Turkish presence in Syria.

Last Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin received Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Moscow. The two statesmen called on foreign forces to leave Syria, a statement seen as a message to Turkey and the US, which have troops in the war-torn country.