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    Turkish military vehicles drive in the Syrian rebel-held town of al-Rai, as they head towards the northern Syrian town of al-Bab, Syria January 9, 2017

    Erdogan: Turkey to Start Military Operation East of Euphrates in Couple Days

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    "We are determined to make that area livable and peaceful," Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Wednesday.

    Turkey intends to launch a military operation in the north-east of Syria in coming days, the Turkish president said, adding that this step will facilitate political solution for the region.

    "The time has come to carry out our intention to neutralize terrorists in the east of the Euphrates. In the coming days, an operation will be launched there. The United States has been informed. We decisively want to bring peace and tranquility to civilians in the east of the Euphrates, as we have already done in other regions of Syria," the president said.

    READ MORE: Turkish General Explains Why Ankara's Op East of the Euphrates is 'Inevitable'

    Earlier, the Turkish Security Council stated that the main threat to the political settlement in Syria is coming from the Kurdish-held territories in the country’s northeast.

    “During the meeting [its participants] pointed out that the main threat to the political settlement in Syria is coming from the [Kurdish] terrorist structure east of the Euphrates River. The fact that some countries do not recognize YPG [People's Protection Units] as a terror organization is damaging the global fight against terrorism,” the Security Council said in a statement.

    Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses members of his ruling party in Ordu, Turkey, Saturday, March 24, 2018
    © AP Photo / Murat Cetinmuhurdar/Pool Photo
    The council added that Turkey could use its right of self-defense and would not allow the YPG to change the demographic structure of northern Syria via forced migrations.

    Turkey has been claiming that the YPG's presence near its border hampers its national security. Earlier this year, it conducted an offensive against the Kurdish militia in Syria's northern border city of Afrin. Ankara is also currently engaged in an operation to eliminate Kurdish strongholds in northern Iraq.

    Tags:
    Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Eastern Euphrates, Turkey, Syria
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