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US Troops Fully Withdrawn from Manbij - Senior US State Department Official

Sputnik News

19:15 15.10.2019(updated 19:49 15.10.2019)

The Syrian army previously retook control over the city of Manbij amid a confrontation between Kurdish militants and Turkish forces that started almost a week ago, following the beginning of Ankara's offensive in Syria.

The United States will increase sanction pressure on Ankara unless the crisis in north-eastern Syria is resolved, a senior US state department official said, as quoted by Reuters.

According to the official who spoke on condition of anonymity, US troops have completely pulled out from the northern Syrian city of Manbij. However, he added that the US still retains control over the airspace in north-eastern Syria.

The State Department official also underlined that the US would only define a ceasefire as troops on the ground halting their offensive. This, if implemented, would be a major step towards the normalisation of US-Turkish relations.

On 9 October, Turkey launched an offensive in neighbouring Syria in a bid to create a safe zone along the border, clearing the area of Kurdish fighters.

Turkey considers the Kurdish forces in Syria to be an extension of the Kurdistan Workers Party, which it has classified as a terrorist organisation.


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