British general hails Turkish-US patrol in Manbij
“I am grateful to the Turkish military for their support in ensuring the safety and security of Manbij,” United Kingdom Army Maj. Gen. Christopher Ghika, Deputy Commander for Strategy and Information, Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve, said at a press briefing at the United States Department of State in Washington.
“This is a critical part of the coalition’s efforts to prevent the resurgence of ISIS there and to enable the voluntary return of refugees and internally displaced people,” Ghika added.
Turkish and U.S. troops on Nov. 8 conducted their second round of joint patrols in Manbij, as part of a deal between Ankara and Washington.
The joint patrols began on Nov. 1.
The Manbij deal between Turkey and the U.S. focuses on the withdrawal of YPG/PKK militants from the city to stabilize the region, which is in the northeast of northern Syria’s Aleppo province.
The PKK is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the European Union.
Operation Euphrates Shield, which began in August 2016 and ended in March 2017, aimed to eliminate the threat along the border in the northern Syrian regions of Jarabulus, al-Rai, al-Bab and Azaz with the use of the Free Syrian Army, backed by Turkish artillery and air cover.