Arch-Rivals Israel, Iran Blast Turkey On Syrian Invasion

Arch-Rivals Israel and Iran for a change are on the same page over Turkey’s aggression in Syria. Iran has called on Turkey to “immediately” end its military operation in northeastern Syria and withdraw its forces while Israeli PM Netanyahu denounced Turkey’s invasion of Kurdish-controlled areas.

In a statement on Thursday, the Iranian Foreign Ministry expressed concern over Turkey’s military offensive which has put civilian lives at risk. The statement stressed that “the dire humanitarian situation and the dangers posed to civilians in the conflict area” necessitate “the immediate cessation of attacks and the withdrawal of Turkish troops from Syria.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday denounced Turkey’s invasion of Kurdish-controlled areas of northeastern Syria and said Israel was prepared to offer humanitarian aid to the Kurds in Syria facing an onslaught from Ankara.

The comments were the first from Netanyahu on the situation in Syria after remaining silent for several days following US President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw American troops from the country and allow the Turkish offensive to move ahead.

“Israel strongly condemns the Turkish invasion of the Kurdish areas in Syria and warns against the ethnic cleansing of the Kurds by Turkey and its proxies,” Netanyahu said in a statement released by his office. “Israel is prepared to extend humanitarian assistance to the gallant Kurdish people.”

The statement (from Tehran) said, Iran does not consider military action as a means to address the woes, expressing Tehran’s opposition to the offensive which would bring about “widespread human and material damage”. The statement further read that the current chaotic situation in the region is the result of “interference of extra-regional” countries, the US in particular.

On Wednesday, Turkey launched a massive assault on Kurdish-held areas in northeastern Syria, with intensive bombardment paving the way for a ground offensive made possible by the withdrawal of US troops.