Turkey does not have any problems with Kurds in Syria and it only aims to fight a PKK-affiliated terror group there, said the president of Iraq’s Kurdish Regional Government (KRG).
Speaking at a panel held by Erbil-based Middle East Research Center (MERI), President Nechirvan Barzani commented on Syria and the PKK terror group, whose Syrian offshoot is the YPG.
Barzani said he was informed about Turkey’s clear stance against the terror group, adding he agreed with the perspective of Ankara that the terror group also posed a threat to the local Kurds living in Syria.
He called on Kurds in Syria to keep the terror group at arm's length and pointed out that the PKK terror group aims to legitimize itself by using Syrian Kurds.
Turkey on October 9 launched Operation Peace Spring to eliminate YPG/PKK terrorists from northern Syria east of the Euphrates River in order to secure Turkey’s borders, aid in the safe return of Syria n refugees, and ensure Syria’s territorial integrity.
Nine days after launching the anti-terror operation in northern Syria, a delegation led by US Vice President Mike Pence came to Ankara to forge a temporary deal under which Turkey would pause its military operation in northern Syria for five days and provide the YPG an exit from the Ankara-proposed safe zone.
Turkey also reached an agreement with Russia on October 22 to force YPG/PKK terrorists to withdraw from the planned terror-free zone with their weapons.
In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the US and the European Union -- has been responsible for the deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants. The YPG is the Syrian offshoot of the PKK.