US sanctions on Turkey against spirit of NATO alliance

US sanctions on Turkey against spirit of NATO alliance

ANKARA-Anadolu Agency
US sanctions on Turkey against spirit of NATO alliance

The U.S. move to put sanctions on Turkey over its anti-terror operation in northern Syria is not in line with the spirit of the NATO alliance, the National Defense Ministry said on Oct. 17.

"Operation Peace Spring continues successfully as planned. In the operation, the protection of our country, borders and people is essential. Even the discourses of sanctions against our country are incompatible with the spirit of the 70-year NATO alliance," the ministry said in a statement.

The statement stressed that Ankara aims at providing voluntary and safe return for Syrian refugees to their homes in Syria.

"Moving the YPG/PKK terror group out of the safe zone is indispensable in this regard. Our fight against Daesh will continue undeterred," it added, using the Arabic acronym of ISIL.

The U.S. on Oct. 14 announced sanctions on two Turkish ministries and three senior government officials over Turkey's anti-terror operation in northern Syria.

Turkey on Oct. 9 launched Operation Peace Spring to eliminate terrorists from northern Syria in order to secure Turkey's borders, aid in the safe return of Syrian refugees, and ensure Syria's territorial integrity.       

Ankara wants to clear east of the Euphrates River in northern Syria of the terrorist group PKK and its Syrian offshoot, the PYD/YPG.         

The U.S.-backed SDF, a group dominated by the YPG, has been controlling some 28 percent of the Syrian territories, including the most of the 911-kilometer-long Syria-Turkey border.

Turkey deems the YPG the Syrian offshoot of the illegal PKK, which is listed as a terrorist organization also by the United States and the EU.