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Turkish Embassy Hosts Press Conference on “Operation Olive Branch”

By Mariam Chanishvili
Monday, January 29
The Ambassador of Turkey to Georgia, Fatma Ceren Yazgan held a press conference regarding the “Operation Olive Branch,” presenting two informational videos related to the issue.

The Operation Olive Branch,carried out on January 20, started at 5 p.m in Syria’s north-western Afrin region to establish security and stability on Turkish borders and to eliminate terrorists of PKK/KCK/PYD-YPG and DAESH that threaten the lives and property of residents in the region including Turkish citizens residing near the border. According to Turkish Embassy the population living close to the border area is often targeted by harassment fires and attacks.

The Embassy stated that the operation wascarried out on the basis of the international law, in accordance with the right to self-defense as outlined in Article 51 of the UN Charter and the relevant Security Council resolutions 1373(2001), 1624(2005), 2170(2014) and 2178(2014)in full respect of Syria’s territorial integrity.

“The objective of the operation is to neutralize terrorist threat in full respect of Syria’s territorial integrity. Turkey has been home to 3 million Syrian refugees since the beginning of the crisis,” stated the Turkish Ambassador.

The international community has been informed of the operation and of its background, goals and legal basis. The UN Secretary General and the President of the UN Security Council were informed immediately. Also, a verbal note has been communicated to the Syrian Consulate General in Istanbul.

The Embassy says that during the planning and execution phases of the operation, all precautions were taken to avoid collateral damage to the civilian population.

So far, Turkish Armed Forces and Free Syrian Army have advanced 10.5 km toward Afrin. 47 points have been cleared of terrorists. 287 terrorist targets have been neutralized.