Syrian Kurds welcome USA arms, Turkey says 'unacceptable'

Posted May 12, 2017

Yildirim said that Turkey can not imagine the US choosing between a strategic partnership with Turkey and a terrorist organization.

Erdogan's statement capped a day of alarmed comments by Turkish officials, with Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu saying that "every weapon that turns up in their hands is a threat directed toward Turkey". The PKK has waged an insurgency in southern Turkey since the 1980s.

Neighboring Turkey has objected to YPG's participation in Raqqa operations. "We never have and never will", he said.

Yildirim told reporters on Wednesday the us decision "will surely have consequences and will yield a negative result for the well".

The post Erdogan urges United States to "immediately" reverse decision on arming Syrian Kurds appeared first on The Independent Uganda:.

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Wednesday he is confident that the USA can allay Turkish concerns, but did not offer specifics as to how.

"We do not envision (that) a long-term YPG presence and governance in the city is acceptable or consistent with the wishes of the local population", she said.

Earlier, Turkey's defense minister called the USA decision a "crisis" between the two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies.

Equipment provided to the SDF would be limited, specific to a mission and provided "incrementally as objectives are reached" White said.

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"I'm not concerned at all about the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation alliance and the relations between our nations".

Senior US officials including Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, have met repeatedly with Turkish officials to try to work out an arrangement for the Raqqa assault that would be acceptable to Ankara.

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan is scheduled to meet Trump at the White House on Tuesday. Erdogan will no doubt push for the United States to drop its support for the YPG. "Our wish is that the US stops this wrong and does what is mandated by our friendship".

Canikli said Turkey would take the diplomatic initiative to convince Washington "to do what friendship requires".

The United States regards the YPG as a valuable partner in the fight against Islamic State militants in northern Syria.

The move also reinforces the idea that the entire Syrian Democratic Force, Syrian Kurds (YPG) and the Syrian Arab Coalition, has the backing of the US, NBC News reported.

On Tuesday, the Pentagon announced that Trump had authorized the arming and equipping of "Kurdish elements" of the SDF "to ensure a clear victory" in Raqqa.

"Such a policy will not be beneficial", said Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Nurettin Canikli to the Turkish broadcaster A Haber.

Last month, Trump gave orders to fire 59 Tomahawk missiles at an air base in central Syria in response to a devastating chemical weapons attack blamed on Syrian President Bashar Assad's forces.

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