Turkish Parliament Authorizes Iraq, Syria Conflicts

Language Allows Broad Interpretation of Targets

The vote was not any real surprise, but at 298-98 the Turkish parliament today approved the government’s mandate to launch military actions inside Iraq and Syria.

The mandate will allow Turkey to grant usage of their military bases to other nations involved in the war against ISIS, meaning the US et al will have access to Turkish airfields that they were previously denied.

Perhaps more importantly, however, the language of the mandate allows Turkey to use its military forces not only against ISIS, but against virtually anybody they choose to label militants, which opens up the possibility that they will attack Kurdish factions as well, many of whom are labeled “terrorists” under Turkish law.

The mandate allows Turkey to begin such operations starting Monday, though it is unclear if the Erdogan government intends to begin such operations then, or simply leaves them open to launch such operations at will in the future.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of Antiwar.com.