Israel rips Turkish invasion of Syria, warns of ethnic cleansing

Prime Minister Netanyahu blasts Turkey's invasion of northern Syria, warns Turkey not to ethnically cleanse Kurds.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Amos Ben Gershom/GPO

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu condemned Turkey’s invasion of northern Syria, warning Thursday against the ethnic cleansing of Syrian Kurds by Turkish forces.

"Israel strongly condemns the Turkish invasion of the Kurdish areas in Syria and warns against the ethnic cleansing of the Kurds by Turkey and its proxies,” said Netanyahu in a statement.

The Israeli premier also offered humanitarian aid to the Syrian Kurds.

“Israel is prepared to extend humanitarian assistance to the gallant Kurdish people.”

The statement comes a day after Turkey launched a wide-scale operation into northern Syria Wednesday.

The Turkish military has reportedly targeted Kurdish militias, striking targets along the Syrian border with Turkey, from Semalka in the east, near the Iraqi border, to Ras-Al-Ain in central Syria.

Turkey claimed it had struck 181 Kurdish targets across northern Syria with airstrikes and artillery, after the US pulled back from northern Syria, opening the door to the Turkish invasion.

Netanyahu’s condemnation of Turkey did not reference President Donald Trump’s decision to pull back from northern Syria, or Trump’s phone conversation this week with Turkish President Recep Erdogan, which green-lighted Turkey’s invasion.

Trump said Wednesday that the US "does not endorse" Turkey's attack, adding that the White House "made it clear to Turkey that this operation is a bad idea."

"Turkey has committed to protecting civilians, protecting religious minorities, including Christians, and ensuring no humanitarian crisis takes place, and we hold them to this commitment."