Prime Minister condemns Turkey’s offensive into Syria 

Turkey's invasion of northern Syria, into areas controlled by Kurdish forces, is seen as a move by Ankara to settle some scores with the Kurds.

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Map showing Turkey-Syria border region / Credit: Google Maps

Prime Minister Antti Rinne (SDP) has condemned Turkey’s offensive into northern Syria and calls for an end to all hostilities.

In a statement, Finland says it supports the EU High Representative in saying there is no  military solution to the Syrian conflict, and that unilateral action may also jeopardise the progress achieved so far against the Islamic State.

On Wednesday Turkey launched an offensive across its border into northern Syria after US President Donald Trump said American forces would be withdrawn from the area, which allowed Turkey to launch attacks into areas held by Kurdish forces.

The offensive is widely seen as specifically targeting Kurds, so that Turkey’s President Erdogan can settle some old scores.

“Turkey’s actions aggravate the already complex crisis in Syria. We are very concerned about the impacts of the measures on the humanitarian situation in Syria” says Rinne.

“Hostilities in the region may provoke further displacements. It is important to prepare for this at EU level, too” the PM adds.

European Union foreign ministers will meet on Monday in Luxembourg to discuss the situation, with Finland planning to call attention to Turkey’s attack and its impact on refugees in the region and the humanitarian needs of Syria.

Prime Minister Rinne says Finland will not grant any new arms export licenses to Turkey “or other countries engaged in war.”