NATO logo (Representative Image)
NATO logo (Representative Image)

NATO forms Working Group to monitor Turkish offensive in Syria: Reports

ANI | Updated: Oct 21, 2019 04:28 IST

Moscow [Russia], Oct 21 (ANI): The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) has established a working group to monitor Turkey's military operation in northern Syria, according to reports.
Citing reports by Welt am Sonntag-- a German news outlet--Sputnik reported that the NATO member states had a two-hour long discussion on the Turkish offensive against the Kurd-populated areas of Syria last Wednesday, following which they decided to establish a command-like 'working group', which would include intelligence, military and political experts, to monitor the Turkish offensive.
Ankara, in turn, committed to provide daily updates on the progress of its operation, the movement of refugees, and damage inflicted in the course of the offensive.
While the meeting took place before Ankara and Washington agreed on a five-day ceasefire in Syria, Turkey informed the NATO allies that the operation would continue until the first half of November, the report added.
The Turkish operation, dubbed 'Operation Peace Spring', began on October 9.
Ankara wants to free the Turkish-Syrian border area from the control of Islamic State and Kurdish militia and create a security buffer zone where Turkey could relocate a portion of some 3.6 million Syrian refugees it currently hosts.
The international community, including Syria itself, has largely condemned the offensive and urged Turkey to withdraw its troops.
A week later, the United States and Turkey announced concluding a deal on halting the operation for 120 hours for the Kurdish forces to leave the area within an 18-mile buffer zone, which Ankara intends to control unilaterally.
Next day, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatened to continue the operation should Washington fail to observe its commitments for the withdrawal of Kurdish troops.
NATO is an international alliance that consists of 29 member states from North America and Europe. (ANI)