Turkey slams US bid to seek funds for SDF
ANKARA – Anadolu Agency
Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister on Feb. 12 criticized plans by the United States military, saying they “will bring relations between the two countries to a near breaking level.”
According to its budget proposal for 2019, the Pentagon is seeking $550 million to train and equip the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) to build a “border security force” in Syria.
“The U.S. should move together with Turkey and stand by Turkey against the Kurdistan Workers’ Party/Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party/Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units [PKK/PYD/YPG], which we regard as terrorist organizations,” said Hakan Çavuşoğlu, speaking to the state-run channel TRT News.
“We see there are different statements emerging in the U.S. itself. We have been saying what they do is wrong for years,” Çavuşoğlu said.
“We have [also] been witnessing an increase in diplomatic traffic in recent days. [U.S. National Security Advisor H.R.] McMaster came, [Secretary of State Rex] Tillerson will be here Friday [Feb. 16]. It is very clear on Turkey’s side. The U.S. continues there with the PYD/PKK and we say we will clear the area from terrorists,” he said.