Turkish army chief, NATO general discuss Manbij roadmap
Turkish Chief of General Staff Hulusi Akar on June 14 held a phone conversation with Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti, NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander for Europe, regarding the roadmap to remove the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) from the northern Syrian town of Manbij.
Akar and Scaparrotti spoke about the “security situation in northern Syria” and the “implementation of the security principles determined in accordance with the Manbij-focused roadmap,” the General Staff said in a statement.
The Manbij roadmap was announced after a meeting in Washington between Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on June 4.
The deal focuses on the withdrawal of the YPG, which is considered an offshoot of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), from the northern Syrian town and on stability in the region.
U.S. Secretary of State Jim Mattis said on June 11 that Washington is ready to implement a Manbij-focused roadmap with Turkey.
“We are prepared to go forward with the collaboration across the forward line of our own troops, which starts with knowing where each of us is at,” Mattis told reporters, referring to Turkish military forces.
“Then start patrols on each side, saying ‘I see you, you see me’ and then probably some kind of collaborative patrols inside that pocket,” he added.