Security and countering violence

During a press conference, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan'ssenior adviser Ibrahim Kalin announced that a "military ground operation in Syria is possible at any time depending on the level of threats received". However, the official said that his country remains willing to continue to support the political process in Syria, initiated in late December by the meeting between the Turkish and Syrian Ministers of Defence in Moscow.

According to the same source, a new meeting of the defence ministers of the two countries could take place before that of the Turkish and Syrian foreign ministers, scheduled for mid-February. "We want security on our borders," he justified, arguing that Kurdish forces were present on Syrian territory. "We never target the interests of the Syrian state or Syrian civilians.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad warned on Thursday that any reconciliation with his Turkish counterpart should have as a precondition "the end of the Turkish occupation" in northern Syria.