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Reports: Turkey, Saudi Arabia Mulling Ground Operations Against IS In Syria


Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu reportedly said that his country and Saudi Arabia may launch ground operations against the Islamic State (IS) group in Syria.

According to Turkish media, Cavusoglu said Saudi Arabia was "ready to send both jets and troops" to Turkey's Incirlik air base.

Saudi Arabia has resumed its participation in air strikes against IS in recent weeks, a move welcomed by Washington.

"Turkey and Saudi Arabia may launch an operation [against IS] from the land," Turkey's Yeni Safak pro-government newspaper quoted Cavusoglu as saying on February 13.

Cavusoglu did not provide any details.

Incirlik is a key hub for U.S.-led coalition operations against IS, with planes from Britain, France, and the United States carrying out raids inside Syria from the base.

U.S. President Barack Obama, however, has ruled out sending U.S. ground troops to Syria.

Saudi Arabia and Turkey both see the ousting of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad as essential for ending Syria's five-year civil war and are bitterly critical of Iran and Russia's support of the Syrian regime.

With reporting from Reuters, AP, and AFP
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