Hollande: Turkish operation against YPG could harm French position as ally against terrorism
Turkey - SMART
The former French President François Hollande said that the possible Turkish operation against the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) could affect France's position as an ally against the Islamic State (IS).
After a meeting in Paris with Khaled Issa, the Kurdish Autonomous Administration representative, Hollande stated, "The Kurds played a major role in the fight against the IS with the support of the International Coalition and therefore of France (…) the contribution of Syria's Kurds to the fight against terrorism has been paid for with heavy human sacrifices," according to AFP.
Hollande added that the threats, if realized, could have dramatic consequences for the population, implicate the ally France in the fight against the IS and cause an increase in terrorism beyond Syria.
Hollande also said that the unilateral decision of Donald Trump to withdraw the US forces from Syria and the threat of a Turkish operation against the YPG will complicate the conflict in Syria.
Earlier, France confirmed that it will keep its military presence in Syria with the International Coalition against the IS despite Trump's decision to withdraw the US forces from Syria. The Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Çavusoglu said that the decision would not be useful if France decided to keep supporting the YPG.
On Dec. 12, 2018, the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced that Turkey will launch a military operation against the YPG in areas east of the Euphrates River and target about 150 cities and towns in al-Raqqa, al-Hasakah, and Aleppo.