PACE President urges Turkey to end military operation in Syria

According to Lilian Mori Pasquier, the current situation poses a real danger of violation of international human rights standards
22:20, 12 October 2019
Turkish army in Syria, October 2019
President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe Lilian Mori Pasquier called on Turkey to end the military operation in northern Syria.

This is said in her statement published on the PACE website.

"It is with great concern that I am following the events related to Turkey's military intervention in northern Syria. This intervention entails risks of great tension, its humanitarian consequences for the population of the region are disastrous, and I regret the loss of human lives, especially civilians," reads the statement.

Pasquier recalled the position of the Assembly contained in resolution 2298 (2019) regarding the situation in Syria, including a call to all parties involved in military operations, “to take all necessary precautions to avoid harming thousands of civilians trapped in the center” of air strikes and ground fighting in accordance with obligations under international humanitarian law.

"I expect that all Council of Europe member states will respect this position and act responsibly. At the same time, I urge Turkey to put an end to the military operation, which has already led to serious humanitarian consequences and poses a real danger of violating international human rights standards," said in a statement.

Related: Turkey deploys forces in Syria

Turkey announced it took the center of Ras al Ain Syrian town. This was stated by a senior Turkish official, Reuters reports.

Turkish-backed Syrian rebels advanced into Ras al Ain in northeast Syria on Saturday but it was unclear how far, with Turkey saying the town center had been taken and Kurdish-led forces denying this and saying they were counter-attacking.

"The National Army took control of the town center this morning. Inspections in residential areas continue," the report said.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration said Turkey’s incursion was causing “great harm” in relations with its NATO ally. The head of the Arab League denounced the offensive and Germany said it was banning arms exports to Turkey, a NATO ally.

The Turkish assault has raised international alarm over its mass displacement of civilians and the risk it could trigger a revival of an Islamic State insurgency in Syria, with a heightened possibility of IS militants escaping Kurdish prisons.

The Kurdish-led administration in Syria’s northeast said nearly 200,000 people had been uprooted so far by the fighting, while the U.N. World Food Programme put the figure at more than 100,000 in the towns of Tel Abyad and Ras al Ain.

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