US alliance with YPG ‘creates ground for terror organizations,’ says Turkish FM Çavuşoğlu
REUTERS photoThe partnership between the United States and the People’s Protection Units (YPG) in the fight against jihadists in northern Syria is “creating the ground for other terror organizations in the region,” Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu has said, reiterating Ankara’s expectation that Raqqa will be handed to the control of local Arabs after its liberation.
“Even if just for tactical reasons, the use of a terrorist organization, the PYD/YPG [the Democratic Union Party and its armed wing] in the Raqqa operation will lead to other terror organizations in the region gaining more ground,” Çavuşoğlu told daily newspaper Türkiye in an interview on Aug. 10.
Turkey and the U.S. have long been in a deep disagreement on the role of the YPG in the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in Syria, especially after the latter started shipping weapons to the group, which Turkey sees as organically linked to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
Çavuşoğlu stressed that Ankara has repeatedly urged the U.S. that “fighting against one terror organization by allying with another terrorist group” is unwise and dangerous, especially for Turkey’s security concerns.
“The aim of the PYD/YPG is to make its territorial gains lasting through demographic engineering under the cover of the fight against the DAESH,” he said, using the Arabic acronym for the ISIL.
“We have conveyed our sensitivities and expectations to the U.S. administration. The U.S. administration has made commitments to us on these. We will continue to monitor the fulfillment of these commitments,” Çavuşoğlu stressed.
“When the operation is concluded, the control and security of Raqqa should be handed to local Arab groups,” he added.