Press release on Turkish airstrikes against Iraq and Syria
Reports coming in say that the Turkish air force carried out airstrikes on the night of April 25 against Iraqi and Syrian regions bordering Turkey. Turkey has stated that the air strikes targeted positions held by the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and Syrian Democratic Forces headed by the Democratic Union Party, close to the PKK. They report around 70 Kurdish fighters dead.
Moscow is deeply concerned by these actions. The Turkish military has acted here against the Kurdish forces that are genuinely combating terrorist groups, above all ISIS, on the ground. At a time when the war on terror in Iraq and Syria is far from over, these actions clearly do not help to consolidate counterterrorism efforts and aggravate an already tense situation.
We are also concerned over the fact that the Turkish airstrikes were carried out against sovereign states’ territory, bypassing these states’ legitimate governments. We consider such actions unacceptable and in breach of the basic principles of relations between states.
In this situation, we call on all parties to show restraint. It is important to show the needed political foresight and focus our attention on the most important task today – combating the terrorist international in the form of ISIS, al-Nusra and other affiliated groups.