Akar: Turkey to start joint patrols with US on Sunday
Date: 2019-09-07 11:32
Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar announced that they are planning to start joint military land patrols on Sunday by Turkish and US forces in northeast Syria for the establishment of a safe zone.
Expressing that Turkey is running thin on patience with the sluggish process of establishing the safe zone, Akar said on Friday (Sep. 6) that there is a general consensus between Turkey and the US on the joint patrols.
"We expect for the activities that have been determined in this respect to continue in a certain order and tempo. We desire to move on this issue," Akar said.
On Aug. 7, Turkey agreed with US military officials to set up a safe zone and develop a "peace corridor" running from the Euphrates River to the Iraqi border to facilitate the return of displaced Syrians currently living in Turkey to their home country and provide security for Turkish border settlements and military outposts.
They also agreed to establish a joint operations center.
Yet, Akar also underlined that Turkey has not forgotten what happened with neither Manbij or Raqqa, when the US refused to clear YPG terrorists from the region.
"Since this [the Manbij deal] failed, we carried out Operation Olive Branch and Operation Euphrates Shield by ourselves. Our determination on the issue is quite clear," he added.
While the process for the establishment of the safe zone is taking steps forward, the US is continuing logistical and training support to the PKK terrorist organization's Syrian affiliate, the People's Protection Units (YPG), making Turkey cautious in fully trusting the country.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday said that in three weeks, on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session, Turkey will make its final effort to find a compromise with the US on creating a safe zone along the eastern shore of the Euphrates.
Based on Daily Sabah