Turkey to take action in Syria ‘when time comes’: Minister
Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar on Jan. 29 vowed to start a new military operation inside Syria when necessary.
“When the time comes, the necessary actions will be taken both in Manbij and east of the Euphrates,” state-run Anadolu Agency quoted Akar as saying during a visit to a military facility in Turkey’s Central Anatolian province of Eskişehir.
Ankara deems the YPG as an offshoot of the illegal PKK, which is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the United States and the European Union. However, the U.S. has supported and armed the YPG in the fight against ISIL in the northern and eastern provinces of Syria.
Since 2016, Turkey’s Euphrates Shield and Olive Branch operations in northwestern Syria have driven out the YPG and the ISIL from the region including the districts of al-Bab, Afrin and Azaz, giving the control to the Turkish military and allied forces of the Free Syrian Army (FSA).
Akar also said Turkey welcomed the Kurdistan Regional Government’s “timely” reactions and measures against an attack on a Turkish base in Iraq.
On Jan. 26, the Turkish Defense Ministry said a base belonging to the Turkish Armed Forces in northern Iraq was attacked due to “provocation by the PKK.”