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Turkiye president: US forces should leave areas east of Euphrates in Syria 

July 21, 2022 at 9:26 am

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (C), Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi (R) and Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) arrive to hold a joint tripartite news conference after the 7th summit in Astana format in Tehran, Iran on July 19, 2022. [Mustafa Kamacı – Anadolu Agency]

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said US forces should withdraw from areas of Syria east of the Euphrates River as part of the Astana peace process, the Anadolu news agency reported.

“America has to leave east of the Euphrates now. This is an outcome that came out of the Astana process,” Erdogan said a day after an Astana process summit with his Russian and Iranian counterparts, stressing that his Astana partners agree with this judgement.

“Turkey expects this as well because it is America that feeds the terrorist groups there,” Erdogan told reporters en route back to Turkiye, referring to the YPG, which the US has partnered with on the pretext of fighting Daesh, but which Ankara labels a terror group.

Erdogan reiterated the possibility of having to launch a military campaign in northern Syria, saying it will remain on Turkiye’s agenda until its national security concerns are dispelled.

He added that Turkiye, Russia and Iran will inevitably unite against terrorist organisations which are currently exploiting oil wells in the area east of the Euphrates and selling them to the Syrian regime.

Erdogan pointed out that the successive American administrations have supported terrorist groups with thousands of trucks loaded with weapons, equipment and munition.

Raisi: Presence of US east of the Euphrates in Syria is ‘unacceptable’