US Markets

Turkey says Washington is stalling on Syria 'safe zone'

Credit: REUTERS/RODI SAID

Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Tuesday that Washington is stalling the implementation of an agreement to create a "safe zone" in northeast Syria.

Adds quotes, background on safe zone

ANKARA, Sept 10 (Reuters) - Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Tuesday that Washington is stalling the implementation of an agreement to create a "safe zone" in northeast Syria.

The NATO allies carried out their first joint military land patrol in the region on Sunday. Turkey wants the operations to expand rapidly and push back Kurdish forces 20 miles (32 km) from the border, creating a zone which Ankara says should be controlled by Turkish troops.

Cavusoglu said Turkey wanted to work with the United States, but was prepared to clear the area of Kurdish YPG fighters itself if necessary.

"Yes, there are some joint patrols but other than that, the steps that have been taken or the steps that are said to be taken are cosmetic steps," he told reporters in Ankara.

"We are seeing that the United States is entering a stalling process... and that it is trying get Turkey accustomed to this stalling process."

Cavusoglu said Washington's approach so far had served the Syrian Kurdish YPG forces more than Turkey. The YPG, which has been a main U.S. ally in the fight against Islamic State in Syria, is considered a terrorist organisation by Ankara, which says it is an extension of Kurdish militants in Turkey.

President Tayyip Erdogan said last week Turkey also aims to send 1 million of the 3.6 million Syrian refugees it hosts to the planned safe zone in northern Syria.

(Reporting by Ezgi Erkoyun and Ali Kucukgocmen Editing by Daren Butler and Dominic Evans)

((ali.kucukgocmen@thomsonreuters.com , @alikucukgocmen; +902123507067; Reuters Messaging: Reuters Messaging: ali.kucukgocmen.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

Latest US Markets Videos

    #TradeTalks: How Investors Start to Position Themselves in front of the Election

    WealthWise Financial CEO Loreen Gilbert joins Jill Malandrino on Nasdaq #TradeTalks to discuss what she is watching in the markets as investors start to position themselves in front of the election.

    Sep 10, 2020

    Reuters

    Reuters, the news and media division of Thomson Reuters, is the world’s largest international multimedia news provider reaching more than one billion people every day. Reuters provides trusted business, financial, national, and international news to professionals via Thomson Reuters desktops, the world's media organizations, and directly to consumers at Reuters.com and via Reuters TV.

    Learn More