Turkey slams US bid to seek funds for SDF

Turkey slams US bid to seek funds for SDF

ANKARA – Anadolu Agency
Turkey slams US bid to seek funds for SDF

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.