Turkey says military operation in Syria is not dependent on US withdraw
Turkey - SMART
On Thursday, the Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Çavuşoglu said that the military operation on the area east of the Euphrates River is not related to the United States forces’ withdrawal from Syria.
Çavuşoglu added that the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has announced about the military operation before the US decision to withdraw its forces from Syria.
Çavuşoglu also said that Turkey is taking needed steps against the People’s Protection Units (YPG), which form a threat against Turkey’s national security with or without US forces in the area, according to the Turkish News Agency Anadolu.
"Turkey is determined on this issue," Cavusoglu said, adding that Turkey will decide on its timeline for the operation.
Çavuşoglu said that the US security authorities are attempting to press the American President Donald Trump to cancel the withdrawal decision, adding that it is important to prevent the terrorist from benefiting from this withdrawal and that Turkey will provide support for the USA during the withdrawal process from Syria.
Earlier, Çavuşoglu stressed the importance of withdrawing the YPG from the Manbij area, adding that the USA is looking more positively to the agreement. Çavuşoglu said that if the agreement of Turley and the USA were implemented, the area would be controlled by their locals.
Çavuşoglu’s statements came after US officials said that the US would not withdraw forces from Syria without guarantees by Turkey to protect the Kurds in Syria. The USA did not set a deadline for the withdrawal.
The United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the Turkish threats of launching a military operation against the People’s Protection Units in Syria would not stop the US forces’ withdrawal from Syria.
Last Tuesday, the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Turkey completed preparations for military action in the area east of the Euphrates River in Syria, saying that Bolton has made a serious mistake in his statement regarding Syria.