Kobane not likely to turn into Afrin-style fight for Turkey, YPG

01 November, 2018, 20:43 | Author: Angel Logan
  • Khashoggi fiancee says Riyadh behind his murder criticises Trump response

Since June 18, the Turkish Armed Forces have carried out 68 individual patrols in Manbij.

Syria's YPG Kurdish militia are the core of a force that has fought against Islamic State with the support of US air power, arms, funds, training and an estimated 2,000 American special forces troops on the ground.

He suggested that the State Department's unwillingness to criticize Erdogan directly was "very hard to understand, makes no sense", and "doesn't fit the facts", as, in many respects, under Erdogan's leadership, Turkey no longer acts as a USA ally.

Joint U.S. -Turkish patrols will begin within hours around the northern Syrian town of Manbij, part of a roadmap for easing tensions between the two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies, an official with a U.S. -backed militia said Thursday. Earlier this year, a Turkish offensive against a Kurdish enclave in northwest Syria prompted the SDF to declare a halt to its operations. Ankara and Washington agreed on a roadmap in June amid Turkish demands for the withdrawal of the US -backed Kurdish militia that freed Manbij from the Islamic State group in 2016.

"I think Erdogan is going to increase the pressure on SDF because the U.S.is not willing to give him Manbij", said Fabrice Balanche, a researcher at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.

Turkish forces responded with immediate counter fire that "liquidated 10 terrorists", the defense ministry said.

"The U.S. needs the YPG against [IS], since Arab [fighters] of SDF are not as efficient, as we can see in Deir el-Zour", he said.

Palladino also noted that the SDF was "in the midst of offensive operations" against IS-although late on Wednesday the SDF announced a pause in that offensive in response to the Turkish attacks.

According to some observers, there are fears within the Self-Administration-the Kurdish-led political authority that unilaterally declared its control over majority-Kurdish regions in 2013-of a repeat occurrence. This assault has already forced Kurdish forces to retreat across the Euphrates river.

SDF forces have dug trenches around Manbij and other areas near the Turkish border. He said they will take place on the front lines between his group and those of Turkey-backed rebels in the operation called Euphrates Shield.

The US-led coalition fighting ISIS has conducted scores of air and artillery strikes in recent weeks as it has sought to drive ISIS from its last stronghold east of the Euphrates River in Syria.

Turkish and United States troops on Thursday began their first round of joint patrols in the northern Syrian city of Manbij, as part of a deal to rid the area of the YPG/PKK terrorist groups, Turkey's national defence minister announced.

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