Turkey will launch an operation in Syria if a safe zone is not established, Turkey's Minister of Foreign Affairs says, as US envoy James Jeffrey meets senior officials in Ankara and regime and Russia step up deadly attacks in de-escalation zones.
In a televised interview, Turkey's President Erdogan also floated the idea of visiting Washington after March, adding that the European Council’s decision on whether ascension talks with Turkey should be shelved “has no bearing”.
Turkey has vowed to carry out a counterterrorist operation in Syria, east of the Euphrates, following two similar successful operations since 2016.
Current and former officials told The Wall Street Journal progress between US and Turkey on the Manbij deal is slow and therefore the military withdrawal is proceeding faster than the political track.
Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu announces a joint "task force" between Ankara and Washington to focus on the coordinated withdrawal of US troops from war-torn Syria.
Ankara to maintain its stance on preserving current status in Syria's Idlib, says Turkey’s National Security Council.
Russia and Turkey say the deal between Turkey and Syria is still relevant and its implementation could address Ankara’s security concerns stemming from the outlawed PKK terror organisation.
While the global allure of Daesh has diminished, it is still a threat to Iraqis and Syrians.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and US President Donald Trump spoke on the phone and agreed to take joint measures to clear Daesh's remnants in Syria and prevent group's resurgence.
Terror group YPG has called on Bashar al Assad's regime forces to "assert control" over areas the group was to withdraw from, including flashpoint Manbij, after US troop withdrawal. Ankara says that "must absolutely not be allowed."
The knee-jerk reaction to the killing of US military personnel in Syria has been that the US might reverse their planned withdrawal. To the contrary, it might solidify the decision to leave, and also lead to increased Turkey-US cooperation.
The attack, claimed by Daesh, comes as the Trump administration is planning to withdraw troops from Syria as the US president says Daesh has been defeated there. Turkey says it believes the assault will not change the US pull-out plan.
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