Turkey rules out unilateral ground intervention in Syria
Turkey is shelling Kurdish militia in Syria, but it has ruled out any unilateral ground intervention there.
It comes as Russia asked the UN Security Council on Friday to call for Syria’s sovereignty to be respected – over concerns about a Turkish ground operation.
“Turkey will not be going into Syria with the boots on the ground if it is not a collective action, either by the Security Council resolution or by the international coalition that we are a part of,” said Turkey’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Halit Cevik.
In a telephone conversation on Friday, Ankara said that President Barack Obama told his counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan that Turkey had a right to self-defence, and expressed worries over advances by Syrian Kurdish militias near Turkey’s border.
The White House says he also urged Turkey to show restraint.
A White House statement said: “President Obama stressed that YPG forces should not seek to exploit circumstances in this area to seize additional territory, and urged Turkey to show reciprocal restraint by ceasing artillery strikes in the area.”