Statement Of The Embassy Of The Republic Of Turkey Concerning Media News On The Allegation That Some Holy Sites In Syria Were Destructed By Turkish Air Forces, 23 March 2018; 18.00hrs
The Embassy of the Republic of Turkey in Beirut regrets that there have been fabricated news stories released by some media outlets in Lebanon claiming that Turkish Air Forces have targeted an archaeological site located in Brad, on the northwest of Aleppo, destroying many buildings including the sacred tomb of St.Maron and the Church of Julianus.
According to the information provided to the Embassy, Turkish Air Forces did not conduct any aerial strike or bombardment or shelling in the area, where those holy sites are located. It should also be noted that an armed extremist group had desecrated the Church of Saint Maron in February 2013, causing severe damage to its holy artifacts and premises.
As stated by the Turkish Armed Forces earlier on 30 January 2018 and 19 March 2018, the “Olive Branch Operation” is being conducted with utmost caution and care not only to prevent civilian causalities, but also to preserve and respect the religious and/or cultural structures, historical artifacts and archaeological sites or public facilities.
In view of the above, the Turkish Embassy rejects these unfolded news and reiterates once again that the “Olive Branch Operation” aims solely to clear terrorists off Turkey's borders and free the people of Afrin from the oppression of terrorist groups and their supporters.
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