Turkish Prime Minister, Binali Yildirim, said that the entire area around Jarablus must be freed of the Syrian Kurds’ self-defense forces. The US supported the initiative of the Turkish Prime Minister.
According to Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim, the Jarablus area in northern Syria must be cleared not only of Islamic State (IS) terrorists, but also of Kurdish militias.
On Wednesday, a campaign called ‘Euphrates Shield’ was launched by the Turkish armed forces, backed by US-led coalition fighter jets, in order to clear Jarablus of extremist groups.
“The Syrian opposition took control of Jarablus and has started to control other settlements in the area. But the entire area around Jarablus must be freed of the Syrian Kurds’ self-defense forces,” the Turkish Prime Minister said, speaking on Haberturk TV on August 24.
On Wednesday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan noted that that the main purpose of the operation in Jarablus was to stop the threats posed by the IS, as well as by Syrian Kurdish militants, which are considered by Ankara as a part of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), branded as a terrorists organization in Turkey.
Vice-President Joe Biden has promised that if Kurds do not leave the territories near the ‘Euphrates Shield’, the US will stop to provide support to them.
As Saleh Muslim, co-chairman of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD), told Sputnik, “the Turkish operation is designed to thwart the democratization of Syria.” According to the local Kurdish authorities, the Turkish airstrikes killed at least 29 civilians and made more than 3,000 others to flee Jarablus.
Armed clashes between the Turkish Forces and Syrian Kurdish militants have already been noted. On August 24, speaking on Radio Voice of America, spokesman for the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), Redur Xelil, said that Turkey’s attack on Jarablus targeted not the IS, but Kurds. He also stressed that Kurds “will not withdraw their forces from west of Euphrates and nobody can subject them to such an imposition.”