Turkey extends Iraq, Syria military mandate
Turkey extended a military mandate to continue operations in Syria and Iraq on Wednesday.
The ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party), Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) and another opposition party IYI Party (Good Party) voted in favor of the bill in the Parliament.
With the one-year mandate, the Turkish military will be allowed to conduct anti-terror and peacekeeping operations in Iraq and Syria until Oct. 30, 2021.
Turkey currently battles the PKK terrorist group in northern Iraq and its Syrian affiliate YPG/PYD in northern Syria.
The group constitutes a serious security threat to Turkey.
In its more than 40-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK, listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the United States and the European Union, has been responsible for the deaths of 40,000 people, including women and children.
Turkey has also launched operations against other terrorist groups in the region, most notably Daesh.
Turkey was one of the first countries to recognize Daesh as a terror group when it emerged in 2013. The country has since been attacked by Daesh terrorists numerous times, including 10 suicide bombers, seven bombings, and four armed attacks that killed 315 people and injured hundreds of others.
In response, Turkey launched military and police operations at home and abroad to prevent further terrorist attacks.