Survey shows support to Turkish operation in N Syria

ANKARA (AA) – A recent survey conducted in Syria's Raqqah and Al-Hasakah provinces has showed local support of 57% to the Turkey’s anti-terror operation in northern Syria.

The survey conducted by American analytical and consulting company Gallup International between Oct. 13-25 took opinions of some 600 adults from the two regions and 100 Kurds, who temporarily left their villages.

The survey showed that 57% of people supported the Operation Peace Spring, while from the total of 100 Kurds, 77% opposed and 23% supported it.

Turkey on Oct. 9 launched Operation Peace Spring to eliminate YPG/PKK terrorists from northern Syria in order to secure Turkey’s borders, aid in the safe return of Syrian refugees, and ensure Syria’s territorial integrity.

Ankara wants YPG/PKK terrorists to withdraw from the region so that a safe zone can be created to pave the way for the safe return of some two million refugees.

On Oct. 22, Ankara and Moscow reached a deal under which YPG/PKK terrorists will pull back 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) south of Turkey’s border with Syria, and security forces from Turkey and Russia will mount joint patrols there.

In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK — listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the European Union — has been responsible for the deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants. The YPG is the Syrian offshoot of the PKK.

The survey also pointed out that 58% of people supported U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw forces from their areas, while among the Kurds, 67% opposed it.

"Our survey shows 55% of those across the two governorates believe Turkey is having a positive influence in the region," the Gallup International said in its report.

It also noted that 69% of people agreed "if Assad gains more territory in the region then I support the use of violence to defend our rights."