Turkey to View Protection of Kurdish Units by Damascus as Declaration of War –Erdogan Aide
ANTAKYA (Sputnik) – The possible protection of the Kurdish units, operating in northern Syria, by Damascus will be regarded by Ankara as a declaration of war on Turkey, Yasin Aktay, an adviser of Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, said on Saturday.
On October 9, Turkey began the Operation Peace Spring, stating it aimed to rid its southern border of the Kurdish militia, which it views as terrorists. Soon after that Damascus sent troops to the north to protect the Kurdish units.
"If the Syrian regime [government troops] wants to enter Manbij, Ayn al-Arab [Kobani] and Qamishli to provide protection for the Kurdish People's Protection Units [YPG], that will be viewed by Turkey as the declaration of war and it [Damascus] will face a relevant response," Aktay said.
However, if the Syrian government provides Turkey with guarantees that the Kurdish units will not operate in the border area, Ankara may change its position on the Syrian government troops' advance to the northern part of the country, according to Aktay.
He added that the Turkish and other foreign troops would leave Syria after the establishment of peace and security across the country.
"Turkey does not grab anyone's territories," Aktay added.
Earlier this week, the ceasefire in northern Syria was announced by US Vice President Mike Pence after hours of talks with Erdogan in Ankara. Pence said the sides had agreed that a 120-hour ceasefire would be put into force in northeast Syria to allow the YPG withdrawal. Both Ankara and the Kurds have accused each other of violating the truce.
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