TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the Turkish army launched its operations in Syria to end the rule of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

“Why did we enter? We do not have an eye on Syrian soil. The issue is to provide lands to their real owners. That is to say we are there for the establishment of justice. We entered there to end the rule of the tyrant al-Assad who terrorizes with state terror. (We didn’t enter) for any other reason,” Hurriyet daily news cited Erdogan as saying on Tuesday.

He also said that by “his estimation” around 1 million people had been killed in Syria since the conflict broke out. The statement was made as the UN puts the death toll at around 400,000.

“Where is the United Nations? What is it doing? Is it in Iraq? No. We preached patience but could not endure in the end and had to enter Syria together with the Free Syrian Army (FSA),” he added.

Back in August, Turkey launched an incursion into Syria, claiming that it was meant to engage both Daesh (ISIL or ISIS) terrorists in the Syrian-Turkish border area and Kurdish forces, who were themselves fighting Daesh. Damascus has on multiple occasions condemned Turkey’s military intervention as a breach of its sovereignty.

Earlier in the day, the Arab League denounced Turkey’s interference in the affairs of Syria, stressing that the Ankara’s support for terrorists has now backfired.

“The issue has to be handed over to the Syrians, opposition and government, excluding of course the terrorist groups,” said Ahmed Aboul Gheit, the secretary general of the League.