Syrian Ambassador to Russia: Turkey has occupied Syrian land

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April 5, 2017 – Fort Russ News – 

RIA Novosti – translated by J. Arnoldski – 

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According to Syria’s Ambassador to Russia, Riyad Haddad, Turkey has unilaterally moved the state border deep into Syria near the Afrin River, essentially seizing Syrian territory. 

“Turkey has taken advantage of the drying up of the Afrin River southeast of the city of Jenderis and moved the barbed wire marking the state border between our country, deep into our territory as if it is Turkish land. Thus, this is a seizure of Syrian lands,” Haddad said.

The ambassador emphasized: “We believe such actions to be a violation of our country’s sovereignty.”

Ankara, according to Haddad, is bringing heavy equipment into the Syrian province of Idlib, where it has occupied Kirbat and Atma. In Kassab, Turkish troops have entered several villages, cut down pine and oak trees, and destroyed hundreds of olive trees. In the area of Dikmadash, they’ve taken a hill near the city of Afrin. 

Turkish officers are beginning preparations for the construction of a wall that would divide the lands captured by them and Syrian territory, Ambassador Haddad believes. 

Ankara’s statements that Operation Euphrates Shield has ended directly contradict what is happening on the ground, the diplomat summarized. 

Haddad added: “If Turkey does not cease its actions in Northern Syria, Damascus has the right to respond to aggression by any means.”

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The Turkish army launched Operates Euphrates Shield on August 24th, 2016 against Islamic State groupings, and with the participation of the Syrian opposition took the northern Syrian border town of Jarabulus and Al-Bab. Turkish PM Binali Yildrim later announced that the operation was successful and finished, but added that a new operation is possible if security threats arise. 

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