Start News Turkey: accusation of war crimes in Syria „irrelevant“

Turkey: accusation of war crimes in Syria „irrelevant“

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Turkey has rejected the accusation of the human rights organization Amnesty International of having committed war crimes in northern Syria. These are „non-objective allegations“ and they are part of a defamation campaign against the Turkish anti-terrorist struggle, the Foreign Ministry announced in Ankara today.

Amnesty International, in a report released Friday, accused the Turkish army and its allied rebels of, among other things, „reckless attacks on residential areas“ that killed and injured civilians. Protürkische rebels are also said to have beaten and shot a Syrian-Kurdish politician.

Ankara: Only work against YPG positions

Turkey’s aim in its use against the Kurdish militia YPG is merely their positions and hiding places and take all necessary precautions to ensure that civilians and civilian infrastructure are not harmed, it said. The State Department stressed that rebels allied with Turkey had set up a commission of inquiry to investigate possible violations of human rights from their ranks.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday in Amnesty’s allegations that there were some who made mistakes among the rebels and promised that they would „take care of it“.

Turkish soldier killed

Meanwhile, according to Ankara, despite a ceasefire, a soldier was killed by shelling the YPG. Another had been injured in the attack in the region around Tal Abjad, said the Ministry of Defense. The soldiers had been shot at during an „reconnaissance and surveillance mission“ including anti-tank weapons. The Turkish military fired back.

The Defense Ministry accused the YPG militia of a total of 20 violations of the ceasefire in northern Syria announced on Thursday. Turkey launched an offensive against the YPG in northern Syria on 9 October, which it regards as a terrorist organization. Ankara justifies the invasion of the right to self-defense.

On Thursday, US Vice President Mike Pence announced after talks in Ankara a ceasefire between the conflicting parties. The ceasefire is intended to give the Kurdish militia the opportunity to withdraw from an area on the Syrian side of the border, where Turkey intends to establish a „security zone“. However, the joint statement left many questions unanswered. For example, it is unclear whether all parties are talking about the same catchment area.

NATO sets up crisis staff

According to a newspaper report, NATO has formed a crisis team dealing with the Turkish offensive in northern Syria and its possible consequences. The panel included intelligence and security experts, military operations experts and political advisers, the newspaper Welt am Sonntag reported, citing NATO circles.

At a meeting of 29 NATO ambassadors to the North Atlantic Council on Wednesday, Turkey agreed to keep its NATO partners constantly informed about attacks, refugee flows and war damage in the combat zone. In addition, Ankara has made it clear internally that the attacks in northern Syria should be continued until the first half of November – this had been before the agreement on a ceasefire.