World News

Turkish offensive in Afrin affects Coalition's anti-IS operations: Spokesperson

Turkish offensive in Afrin affects Coalition's anti-IS operations: Spokesperson

A VOA reporter in northern Syria who was present during the tour said the delegation reassured the local population of US support before meeting with city officials.

The US-led coalition is limiting its military operations against the Islamic State (IS) in eastern Syria as many Kurdish leaders within the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have left the area to battle the Turkish forces in Afrin, the coalition spokesperson revealed on Thursday.

Turkey, which on Sunday stormed the northern Syrian town of Afrin after a two-month offensive against the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia, has repeatedly threatened to push its operations further east to Manbij where US troops are stationed. He added this included Kurds in both Syria and Iraq. Pulling out only from Manbij would not be enough, Cavusoglu said.

Turkey has threatened to expand its military operation in the northwestern region around Afrin to Manbij, in pursuit of the Kurdish groups.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday spoke by phone to discuss regional issues.

More news: Spotify discovers two million users blocked ads for free

Ankara was seeking an agreement with Washington over who will secure Manbij after the YPG, which Turkey considers a terrorist organisation, withdraws from the area.

Asked about Kalin's comments, US Department of State Spokesperson Heather Nauert said: "Well, that's amusing, because no agreement has been reached".

He also said Ankara would monitor the return of weapons given to the YPG by the United States.

Erdogan also said in his speech on Monday that Turkey would carry out an offensive against Kurdish fighters in northern Iraq if Baghdad does not clear the region of them, referring to the PKK presence there.


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