Turkey's actions can undermine stability in Syria: MEA

Turkey-backed Syrian opposition fighters going to Tel Abyad from Turkish gate towards Syria. (AFP Photo)

India on Thursday slammed Turkey for its 'unilateral military offensive' in northeast Syria a day before.

“We are deeply concerned at the unilateral military offensive by Turkey in north-east Syria. Turkey’s actions can undermine stability in the region and the fight against terrorism. Its action also has the potential for causing humanitarian and civilian distress,” the Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement.

On Wednesday, the Tayyip Erodgan government launched military operations against Kurdish YPG fighters (described as terrorists by Ankara) near Turkey's southern border, putting the region in a turmoil once again.

Turkish jets and artillery targeted Kurdish-controlled areas in Syria, forcing thousands of civilians to flee their homes.

“We call upon Turkey to exercise restraint and respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria. We urge the peaceful settlement of all issues through dialogue and discussion,” the MEA said.

Ankara had earlier riled New Delhi for its comments on Jammu and Kashmir at the UN summit, drawing sharp criticisms from the Ministry of External Affairs.

Raising the Kashmir issue at the UNGA last month, Erodgan said the stability and prosperity of South Asia could not be separated from Kashmir. In his speech he mentioned that despite the UN resolutions “eight million people were stuck” in “Indian Kashmir”, bringing cheers to the Pakistani camp.

India later asked Turkey to get an understanding of the situation on the ground before making any further statements on the Kashmir issue.

“India and Turkey are friendly countries. We, therefore, deeply regret that since August 6, there have been repeated statements by the Turkish government on a matter completely internal to India. These statements were factually incorrect, biased and unwarranted,” MEA spokesman Raveesh Kumar had stated on Oct 5.

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