Turkey to arrest 228 for links to cleric in probe of military, ministry: Anadolu

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkish prosecutors investigating the military and justice ministry on Tuesday ordered the arrest of 228 people over suspected links to the network that Ankara says was behind a 2016 coup attempt, state-owned Anadolu news agency reported.

There has been a sustained crackdown on alleged followers of U.S.-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen since the failed putsch in July 2016, in which some 250 people were killed. Police still routinely carry out raids targeting suspects.

Turkey looking to re-open northern Cyprus ghost town after 46 years

16 Feb 2020; MEMO: Turkish and northern Cypriot officials met on Saturday in an abandoned town wrecked by war to discuss potentially re-opening the area after 46 years, a move that Ankara said was a “historic” opportunity to bring tourism and economic benefits, reported Reuters.

Maras, previously known as Varosha, a southern suburb of Famagusta, has been fenced off and abandoned since Turkey invaded northern Cyprus after a Greek-inspired coup in 1974.

Erdogan says Turkey has no intention to invade Syria

ISTANBUL, Feb. 15 (Xinhua) -- Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday that Turkey has "no intention to invade or annex the Syrian territory."

Speaking at an event of his ruling party in Istanbul, Erdogan noted that the problem in Idlib, the last rebel-held stronghold in Syria, would not be resolved until the government forces are drawn to the limits set by the Sochi deal.

"Otherwise, we will handle it before the end of February," the Turkish president stressed.

Turkey says Libya's Haftar violating ceasefire, must be stopped

ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu accused Libyan military commander Khalifa Haftar on Saturday of constantly violating a ceasefire in the country, saying he “must be stopped” so a political solution could be found.

Turkey backs the internationally-recognized government of Fayez al-Serraj in Libya and has sent military personnel to the country in support of Serraj. President Tayyip Erdogan has also warned that Ankara may deploy troops there if necessary.

Turkey to export ‘fast-results’ coronavirus detection kit

15 Feb 2020; MEMO: Turkey will in coming days export to Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan locally-produced coronavirus detection kits that can get results in about two hours, its health minister said on Friday, according to a report by Reuters.

China’s coronavirus outbreak has showed no sign of peaking with health authorities reporting more than 5,000 new cases earlier on Friday.

Turkey says it will take steps if talks with Russia on Syria's Idlib fail

ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey wants to solve issues with Russia over the northwestern Syrian region of Idlib through diplomacy but will take other steps if necessary, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Saturday.

Turkey and Russia back opposing sides in the conflict, but have collaborated to reach a political solution. A Syrian government offensive disrupted Ankara and Moscow’s fragile cooperation, after 13 Turkish troops were killed in two weeks.

Turkey increases security measures at Russian embassy due to threats

ANKARA, February 14. /TASS/: Turkish officials have increased security at the Russian Embassy in Ankara in the wake of threats addressed to Ambassador Alexey Yerkhov due to an escalation of tensions in Syria’s Idlib, spokesperson for the Russian diplomatic mission in Turkey Irina Kasimova informed TASS on Friday.

"Yes, it is true, tensions have escalated lately. Due to this, we asked the Turkish officials to apply additional security measures," she said.

Turkish President Threatens To Attack Syrian Forces “Everywhere” If Turkey’s Troops Targeted

ANKARA, Feb 13 (NNN-ANADOLU) – Turkish president threatened to attack Syrian forces “everywhere,” if Turkish soldiers are targeted again in the Idlib province.

“If any harm comes to our soldiers in observation posts or anywhere (in Syria), I declare that we will hit (Syrian) forces everywhere, regardless of the Sochi deal,” Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in parliament.

Erdogan was referring to the 12 observation posts established in Idlib, aiming to monitor the cease-fire in the last rebel stronghold.

Turkey plans to drive Syrian forces beyond Idlib observation points

ANKARA, February 12. /TASS/: Turkey is determined to drive Syrian forces beyond its observation points in Syria’s Idlib province, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said before the Parliament Wednesday.

"Turkey is determined to drive the forces of the regime [of Syrian President Bashar Assad] beyond the Idlib de-escalation zone boundaries, beyond our observation points, before the end of February," he said, adding that Ankara is "ready to use any necessary force."

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