Akar: Joint Turkish-US operation center fully operational
Date: 2019-08-24 17:47
Turkish National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar announced Saturday (August 24) that the Turkey-US Joint Operations Center to establish and manage a safe zone in northeast Syria had officially commenced operations at full capacity.
Although neither side has revealed details about the center, such as the size of the zone or the command structure of the forces operating there, but Akar said: "The command of center is by one US general and one Turkish general."
The minister said the first joint helicopter flight would be conducted later in the day and that implementations on field as part of the first phase of the safe zone plan had already started. Turkish drones carried out surveillance work in the safe zone area last week as preparation for the helicopter flight.
"We have started destroying terrorist positions and targets," Akar added. He also reiterated that Turkey would use its right of self defense to the full extent in case of an attack on Turkish observatory posts or its presence in Idlib.
Following long-running discussions, Turkey and the US agreed Thursday on starting the first phase of the safe zone plan in northern Syria.Akar and his US counterpart Mark Esper discussed the issue in a phone call. According to a statement by the National Defense Ministry, the defense chiefs also agreed on holding a meeting in Ankara as soon as possible between Turkish and US military delegations to further coordinate the process.
Based on DS