IPU demands Turkey to end its military operations on Syrian territory which offer ISIS an opportunity to regain influence

Resolution submitted by the delegations of France, United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland and Egypt and adopted at the 141st Assembly of the IPU in Belgrade, Serbia. The resolution read as follows:

On 9 October 2019, the President of the Republic of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced the beginning of a new military operation, called "Operation Peace Spring", against the Kurdish militia of the People’s Protection Units in the northeast of Syria.

This ground offensive in Syria by the Turkish army and Syrian auxiliary forces was accompanied by air strikes targeting several cities bordering Turkey. On 12 October, after four days of bombing, an attack was launched against the city of Ras al-Ain held by Kurdish forces. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights announced that the Turkish army and its Syrian allies had occupied 27 Syrian villages.
On the evening of 12 October, the United Nations estimated that about 100,000 civilians had fled the combat zones. Their number could quickly reach 150,000.

After four days of fighting, the death toll reached dozens of civilians and fighters. This number is changing rapidly because of the violence and the intensity of the fighting, which makes the presence of observers difficult.

This offensive, decided unilaterally by Turkey, threatens the diplomatic advances obtained by the world coalition against Daesh in which Turkey however participates. This action also increases the instability of the region and the risk of the resurgence of Daesh whose threat remains significant and attacks Kurdish and Arab forces that played a decisive role in the fight against Daesh.

This military operation will cause further displacement of populations with the risk of aggravating the refugee crisis in the region while the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees has already registered 6.7 million Syrian refugees in the world and Turkey is home to 3.7 million refugees.

The 141st Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union,

(1) Deploring the military offensive launched on 9 October 2019 by Turkey on Syrian territory,

(2) Concerned by the threats caused by this unilateral action to the stabilization efforts in the region initiated by UN Security Council resolution 2254 of 18 December 2015,

(3) Denouncing the fact that this operation increases the risk of resurgence of Daesh whose threat remains significant and that it attacks Kurdish and Arab forces that played a decisive role in the fall of the Caliphate,

(4) Deeply disturbed by the number of civilian casualties caused by this operation, the worsening population displacement and the resurgence of a migratory crisis in the region, with the civilians fleeing the theatres of operation already reaching the number of 100,000 people after four days of fighting,

(5) Reaffirming that the return of refugees and IDPs to their places of origin must be safe, voluntary and dignified when conditions allow,

  1. Condemns the unilateral use of armed force, conducted without an international warrant, in the territory of another State;
  2. Demands Turkey to end its military operations on Syrian territory which offer Daesh an opportunity to regain influence in the region and raise fears that thousands of terrorist fighters detained by Kurdish and Arab forces will join terrorist groups still active ̶ nearly 800 terrorist fighters having already fled their detention camps after five days of offensive;
  3. Calls on all parties to urgently ensure the long-term and unhindered protection of civilian populations;
  4. Reaffirms that a sustainable solution to the Syrian conflict cannot be achieved through the military but only through the diplomatic channel and the commitment of all parties within the framework of the United Nations in accordance with the above-mentioned resolution 2254.

15 October 2019