Turkey to bring peace to the Middle East, says interior minister

Turkey will transform the Middle East into a peaceful geography as it did in the country’s predominantly Kurdish eastern and southeastern regions, Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu said on Saturday.

Soylu called out countries looking to stir trouble in the Middle East, promising Kurdish, Arab, Alevi, Sunni people that Turkey will transform the region during a speech he delivered in the country's southeastern province of Adıyaman, Karar newspaper reported.

"It is Turkey and this nation that will turn the Middle East into a land of peace,’’ Soylu said. "We will achieve this all together, through protecting brotherhood". 

Soylu went on the say that Turkey was defeating terrorism with cooperation from people of every ethnic background in the country, in an apparent reference the country’s decades-long war against the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).

The PKK is armed group that has waged a three decade-long insurgency against Turkey for self-rule and deemed a terrorist organisation by Turkey, the United States and Europe.

Over 40,000 people, mostly Kurds, have died in the fighting between the PKK and Turkish security forces since 1984.

Turkey last month launched an offensive in northeast Syria targeting previously U.S-backed Kurdish forces, which it sees as an existential threat due to their links to the PKK.