Erdogan’s aggression in Syria threatens the region’s peace and security, an Arab NGO speaks out

Maat Condemns Turkish Military Intervention in Syria

Okeil: The Turkish aggression is a violation against Syrian sovereignty and threatens the region’s peace and security.. Erdogan must be held accountable by the international community…..

Maat for Peace, Development and Human Rights, a non-partisan civil society organisation condemned the Turkish military intervention in Syria. It was carried out on Wednesday on the areas of northeastern Syria, specifically the cities of Tel Abyad and Ras al-Ain, resulting in fatalities and injuries among civilians. The press release by MAAT stated in the strongest terms:

“The casualty toll of the first day of the operation, entitled “Spring of Peace” by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, reached 15 dead, including 8 civilians, as well as 7 members of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and 28 wounded, after warplanes bombed the cities of Ras al-Ain and Ain Issa. This was in conjunction with artillery fire on the city of Tall Abyad, where a civilian was killed and two others were injured by the first rocket. The Turkish aggression expanded over about 450 km from the city of al-Hasakah on the banks of the Tigris River in the far east to Kobani on the banks of the Euphrates River.

Turkish shelling has not only targeted civilians, but has also targeted vital places. SDF has announced that raids carried out by Turkey have targeted a prison holding ISIL detainees and the Mansoura dam in Dirk countryside, which provides drinking water for 2 million people.

Ayman Okeil, President of Maat, described the Turkish aggression against Syria as a violation of Syrian national sovereignty, a blatant violation of international law and the UN Charter and a threat to peace and security in the region. The international community therefore should press the Turkish regime to stop this military intervention and hold Turkish President Erdogan accountable for the war crimes he is committing against the Syrian people.

Okeil affirmed that Erdogan’s regime used to aggression on the Syrian people. In February 2015, for example, Turkey penetrated into Syrian territory, under the pretext of transferring the mausoleum of Suleiman Shah from Aleppo province. In November of the same year, the Turkish Air Defense shot down a Russian plane for allegedly violating Turkish airspace, which Ankara later apologized for. In August 2016, Turkey launched Operation Euphrates Shield inside Syrian territory under the pretext of fighting ISIL. This operation targeted the cities of Jarablus, Azaz and Bab, which were controlled by Kurdish units. In October 2016, the Turkish army intervened in Idlib countryside, leaving a large number of civilian casualties. In January 2019, the Turkish President launched Operation Olive Branch that targeted the Kurds inside Syrian territory.”

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