UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Monday urged all parties in Syria to demonstrate maximum restraint amid Turkey's preparations to start a military operation in the north of the country.
"The Secretary-General, for his part, is following with great concern the situation in the north and northeastern Syria, particularly, the risks to civilians from any potential escalations," United Nations spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said in a press briefing on Monday told reporters. "It is very important that all parties exercise maximum restraint."
Dujarric also said that Guterres has been in contact with all relevant parties in the region regarding this matter and reiterated that there is no military solution to the Syrian conflict.
"The Secretary-General also emphasizes that... sustained, unimpeded and safe humanitarian access to civilians in need must be guaranteed in order to allow the UN and its humanitarian partners to continue to carry out the critical work in Syria," the spokesman added.
On Saturday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced that Ankara may launch a military operation in Syria in the coming days to clear the border area from Kurdish fighters. Meanwhile, the White House said late on Sunday that US forces would not support the Turkish military operation and would withdraw from the area.
The United States had backed Kurdish forces in Syria as allies in the fight against the Islamic State, but Turkey considers them to be an extension of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). Turkey has classified the PKK as a terrorist organization.
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