ANKARA, November 23. /TASS/. Turkey plans to start a new cross-border operation at the most opportune time, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday.
"Air strikes against terrorists in Syria and Iraq are just the beginning. We have never been so serious about securing our borders. We will launch the operation at the most appropriate time for us. Administrations in Syria and Iraq should not feel threatened. We intend to ensure the territorial integrity of these countries," he said during a speech in parliament.
On Tuesday, Erdogan said Turkey might soon launch a cross-border ground operation in northern Syria against the forces of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and the People's Defense Units based there, which Ankara regards as terrorist.
Turkey’s air operation codenamed Claw Sword began on November 20. Over 50 aircraft and 20 drones were involved. Artillery provided support on the ground. Strikes were carried out against the bases of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and its offshoot in Syria - the People's Defense Units. The Turkish Defense Ministry said that the operation had been successfully carried out in northern Iraq in the areas of Qandil, Asos and Hakurk, as well as near Arap-Pynary, Tall Rifaat, Cizre and Derik in northern Syria.
According to Turkish media reports, Turkish F-16 fighters resumed strikes on targets in Syria on November 21 and 22 after Turkish border towns came under fire from Syrian territory.