Minister of National Defense Hulusi Akar answered NTV's questions in the Geyiktepe Base Area in Çukurca, Hakkari, located at the zero point of the border in northern Iraq, where Operation Claw-Lock continues. Minister Akar summarized the following in the interview:
VERY SERIOUS PLANNING HAS BEEN MADE
As you know, we have started our activities intensively since Sunday last week and these activities continue successfully until now. At the beginning, we made a very detailed planning, which was one of the factors underlying this success. Our friends with the relevant institutions and organizations have made very serious analyzes, studies, field studies and plans, and accordingly, we have started to enter the land from both air and land very successfully as of Sunday. From that moment on, our friends continue to advance comfortably on the ground by using our air support on the one hand and our ground fire support elements on the other, and using our UAVs and SİHAs effectively, and unfortunately, there have been martyrs among my heroic and self-sacrificing friends. It is our duty to keep the memory of these martyrs alive. Our martyrs, who really did this, were our sons and brothers, who shielded their breasts to lead their troops and clear the way for their troops. I wish God's mercy on them. We have the wounded, we have taken all the measures to treat our wounded as effectively as possible, we carry out these measures, and therefore there is no problem in their treatment here or in their transport from here to Ankara. Thankfully, we are doing this with the opportunities provided by our state.
A LARGE SECTION OF THE REGION IS UNDER CONTROL
Most of the area is now under control, but there are many caves inside this controlled area. These caves must be controlled one by one and the terrorists who are here must be neutralized. In the briefing we just received, our friends told us that their work in the caves continues, and we are making an effort to complete our activities here by fighting terrorists without harming the environment or civilians.
Again, the fight against these hand-made explosives, which terrorists scatter dishonestly and recklessly, is the most important subject of our work here. In this regard, our friends and METI teams continue their fight against these hand-made explosives as successfully as possible, and I hope that we will try to conclude the Claw-Lock Operation as soon as possible, in the most effective and successful way, by carrying out our activities in this manner, with increasing violence and tempo. .
WE RESPECT THE BORDERS OF ALL OUR NEIGHBORS, PRIMARY IRAQ
I would like to highlight one point here. While doing this, we are extremely respectful to the borders of all our neighbors, especially Iraq. There is no question of violating the rights and territorial integrity of our Iraqi brothers here. What we are trying to do is to fight against terrorists and our only goal right now is to neutralize terrorists. As we all know, we are determined to save our noble nation from this trouble that has plagued our nation for 40 years. This is the issue we are dealing with. Here, we and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and other institutions and organizations, when necessary, explain and explain it to our interlocutors in accordance with the language. This is how it should be understood. Our contacts with Baghdad and Erbil continue in a very friendly manner.
OUR FRIENDS SUCCESSFULLY TRANSPORTED TO THE REGION BY AIR AND LAND
(I think the opposite side is the Zap region?) Yes, the Zap is below, the mountains and hills seen in front of you, these are the regions where we are currently operating. Our friends successfully transferred to the region by air and land. They took control of all these areas. But the caves existing within those regions also need to be checked one by one, this is the work we are doing now. Also, from time to time, some goals are determined by friends in various ways. By SİHA, UAV or our friends in the field. Necessary effects are made on them, either by means of ground fire support, artillery - as you can hear now - or by using our SİHAs and our Air Force. As our President knows, within the framework of his directives, we have brought our activities to this point today, in line with the concept of destroying terrorists at their source. Hopefully we will conclude it successfully in the future. This is our aim, this is our effort.
BORDER WILL BE LOCKED, UNCONTROLLED ENTRY-EXIT WILL NOT BE POSSIBLE
(Importance of the Zap region) First of all, this was the only one left from all the cleared areas. So that was one link in the chain, this will be completed. This is what we call a lock, the border will be locked. Therefore, uncontrolled entry and exit will not be possible on our border in any way, this is our effort, and therefore we will completely drive the terrorists out of our country and protect our borders. But at the same time, we have launched this Operation Claw-Lock with the aim of destroying these terrorists on the spot, in order to prevent them from gathering, regrouping and starting to abuse and rape later on. As you reminded me, this is the point where this Claw Operation has come, this is the last one...
OUR MAIN PURPOSE IS TERRORISTS
We talked and are discussing all of these within the framework of respect for the territorial integrity of our Iraqi brothers. Our main goal here is to neutralize terrorists, terrorists. We are in this effort, we strive for it, and I hope we will do that too, and that's almost our target, terrorists. We plan to complete this task by finally neutralizing the terrorists.
WE ARE DETERMINED TO END TERROR, IT NEEDS TO BE WELL UNDERSTOOD
(Latest situation in northern Syria) Of course, terrorists are terrorists everywhere. There it is called YPG, PYD and so on. But this does not change the fundamentals in any way. For us, the PKK, the YPG, and the PYD are all the same, and we are trying to explain them specifically to all our allies.
In other words, the fact that no support is given against them here, and even if it is, the fight against terrorism is essential for us. From time to time, threats, harassment and rapes occur in the Peace Spring region, the Euphrates Shield Operations region, the Olive Branch Operations region, or beyond in the Spring Shield region in northern Syria. As a matter of fact, one of our police brothers was martyred there recently. There are targets that we choose, examine and identify with our planned activities against these harassments. Target analyzes are made, and therefore, even if the perpetrator of the abuse is not known, even if we cannot detect him, we respond by hitting those known targets and making the necessary intervention.
Our main principle is this: We are determined to end terrorism. This is well understood, everyone should know this. On the other hand, we have never and will never let the blood of our comrades-in-arms and colleagues be on the ground, be it police or soldiers; We are committed to this as well. As you can see on this subject, you followed closely in the briefing we just received. We see that our friends work with a high morale and a high motivation. I hope our friends will overcome these terrorists, we believe in that.