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Qatar mulls Syria intervention as Saudi, Turkey conduct exercises Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Qatar mulls Syria intervention as Saudi, Turkey conduct exercises

Annual security conference in Munich bought together global powers to discuss solution for Syria [Getty]

Date of publication: 15 February, 2016

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Global fight against the Islamic State group escalates as Qatar shows willingness to send troops to Syria side by side with other Gulf forces.

The global fight against the Islamic State group has taken centre stage following numerous announcements by Gulf States showing willingness to intervene.

As reports of Saudi-Turkish military exercises surface, Qatar has announced its readiness to take part in the fight against IS.

Qatar joins an increasing number of Gulf countries that have expressed interest in sending troops to combat IS in Syria.

This comes just days after Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates announced their readiness to intervene.

"In October 2015, our former foreign minister mentioned this clearly that if the coalition decided to do anything against Daesh, we are ready to do so," said Qatari Foreign Minister, Sheik Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani at the annual security conference in Munichm using the Arabic acronym for IS.

"This is something which was planned earlier," he affirmed.

The FM stated Qatar's commitment to protect the Syrian people while stressing its willingness to fight against the militant group "side by side with Saudi Arabia and the UAE, if requested to do so."

Al-Thani reiterated Qatar's position on Syria which believes the escalating events in Syria began as a civilian revolution which deteriorated due to brutality inflicted by the Assad regime as well as failure to act by the international community.

He called on the international community to help fight the repressive regime by aiding in the fight against terrorism while urging Iranian and Russian hostilities in the country come to a halt.

The news comes as joint Saudi Arabian-Turkish military training reportedly begun on Monday.

The kingdom deployed planes to Turkey's Incirlik air base just days after first announcing its intentions.

Turkish Foreign Minister, Mevlut Cavusoglu said the country may launch a ground offensive in Syria with Saudi Arabia despite the kingdom stating its operations will be limited to training local rebel  groups.

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