Portuguese / Spanish / English

Middle East Near You

Turkey will launch another Syria operation if area not cleared of Kurdish YPG

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in Doha, Qatar on 3 November 2019 [Cem Özdel/Anadolu Agency]
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in Doha, Qatar on 3 November 2019 [Cem Özdel/Anadolu Agency]

Turkey’s foreign minister said Ankara would launch a new military operation in northeast Syria if the area was not cleared of what he called terrorists, state-owned Anadolu Agency reported on Monday.

Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu was quoted as saying that United States and Russia had not done what was required under agreements that halted a Turkish offensive against the Kurdish YPG militia in northeastern Syria last month.

The deals stipulated that the YPG would be removed from a swathe of land bordering Turkey in northeastern Syria.

READ: Turkish authorities capture Syria bomb attack suspect

Cavusoglu called on Washington and Moscow on Monday to do what is necessary under the deals.

“If we do not obtain a result, we will do what is necessary, just as we launched the operation after trying with the US,” Cavusoglu was quoted as saying, referring to work with Washington to remove the YPG from the area before Turkey launched its cross-border incursion on October 9.

Ankara views the YPG, the main component of the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) that helped the United States defeat Islamic State, as a terrorist group with links to Kurdish militants on Turkish soil.

Turkey’s latest offensive was widely condemned by Ankara’s Western allies, who said the assault could hinder the fight against Daesh militants in Syria. Turkey has dismissed the concerns, saying it will continue to combat Daesh.

READ: Erdogan says Turkey will not leave Syria until other countries pull out

Despite amicable relations between the presidents of the two countries, the US Congress has passed a resolution calling on President Donald Trump to impose sanctions against Ankara, a NATO ally, over the offensive.

The Republican chairman of the US  Senate Foreign Relations Committee said last week he did not want lawmakers to pass legislation imposing sanctions on Turkey for now. He cited a need to lessen friction during talks over Turkey’s purchase of Russian S-400s missile defense system, another point of disagreement between the allies.

Categories
Asia & AmericasEurope & RussiaInternational OrganisationsMiddle EastNATONewsSyriaTurkeyUS
Show Comments
Show Comments