Erdogan announces plans to create 'security belt' in southern border
The Turkish leader stresses that the "safety zone" will be established along the border "from the west to the east."
Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pledged on Friday to create a "security zone" in Syria in a bid to ward off Kurdish groups from carrying out terrorist attacks on Turkish civilians residing near the Syrian border.
The Turkish President stated that the "safe zone" will include the Syrian border city of Ayn Al-Arab.
Since November 20, Turkey has been carrying out a series of airstrikes against targeted Kurdish groups in Syria and Iraq following the terrorist attack on November 13, which left six people dead and 81 injured in Istanbul.
Read more: Turkey launches Operation Claw-Sword against SDF, PKK, YPG
Turkey blamed the attack on the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia and the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), but the Kurdish groups denied any responsibility for the attack.
"With the security (zone) we are establishing on the other side of our border, we are also protecting the rights of millions of women and children," Erdogan said during a televised speech to mark International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.
"God willing we will complete this (zone) along the border from the west to the east as soon as possible," he added.
On August 8, Erdogan reiterated the intention to re-establish a "security zone" with a 30-kilometer security line on the country's southern border.
Read more: Turkey hits nearly 500 'Kurdish' targets in Iraq, Syria: Minister