Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar stressed that his country respects the borders and sovereignty of neighboring countries, and that its presence in northern Iraq is to combat terrorist organizations.
In a speech at the Guljuk Naval Command Center, Akar said, “Our only goal is to fight terrorism.
Everyone should know that we are in northern Iraq because of the terrorists’ nesting in the region. “
He added, “We respect the borders and sovereignty of our neighbors, especially the brotherly and friendly country of Iraq, and no one should doubt this.”
He stressed that Turkey has no other goal in Iraq than to neutralize the terrorists who have been targeting Turkish citizens for 40 years from northern Iraq.
He pointed out that the number of terrorists who have been neutralized in the “Lightning” and “Thunderbolt” operations in northern Iraq since its launch on April 23 last rose to 68.
While the total in Iraq since last January 953.
On the issue of the island of Cyprus, Akar said that it is a national issue for Turkey, and that the two-state structure has now become a necessity on the island.
He stated that Turkey wants dialogue with Greece to find political solutions, but Athens is escalating events and increasing tension.
And they use provocative and threatening language, stressing that they will not reach any goal with this behavior against Turkey.
He pointed out that Turkey has no goals in land, water, or anyone’s rights, and at the same time, everyone knows well that Ankara will not give up an iota of its rights.
On April 23rd, Turkey launched operations “Lightning” and “Thunderbolt” simultaneously against “PKK” terrorists in the “Matina” and “Afshin-Basian” regions in northern Iraq.
It is noteworthy that the “PKK” takes its stronghold in the Qandil Mountains in northern Iraq, and is active in many cities, regions and valleys, from which it launches attacks on the Turkish interior.