Turkey announces ‘plans’ for joint US operation against ISIS

November 18, 2015  

Turkey’s foreign minister on Wednesday said Ankara “has plans” for a joint operation with the United States to end the presence of Islamic State terrorist along any part of its border with Syria.

Foreign Minister Feridun Sinirlioglu told the state-run news agency Anatolia that ISIS jihadists still had a presence along some of Turkey’s border with northern Syria.

“We have certain plans to put an end to the control that ISIS is still exercising on a zone of our frontier,” he said. “These are plans for a joint operation with the United States.”

“When these plans are completed, our operations will continue with more and more intensity. You will see this in the days to come.”

US Secretary of State John Kerry said in an interview with CNN late Tuesday that “we are entering an operation with the Turks” to shut off 98 kilometers (61 miles) of border still not secure from ISIS.

Their comments come amid growing momentum for coordinated international action against ISIS after the Paris attacks last week claimed by the terrorist group which killed 129 and injured 350.

ISIS “is still present in a zone on our border. We will not tolerate it keeping a presence on our border,” said Sinirlioglu.

The minister did not expand on what the operation with US forces would entail but the Hurriyet daily quoted security sources as saying is would involve clearing an area from Mare to Jarablus in northern Syria of ISIS terrorist. 

It would be conducted by Turkish F-16s and US F-15s from the Turkish base of Incirlik, baacked up by US A-10s to destroy armoured vehicles belonging to ISIS.

AFP contributed to this report.

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