Spokeswoman: Turkey closely monitoring YPG/PKK withdrawal in N Syria

Spokeswoman: Turkey closely monitoring YPG/PKK withdrawal in N Syria
# 22 October 2019 14:13 (UTC +04:00)

Turkey has been closely monitoring the withdrawal of the YPG/PKK terrorists from the planned safe zone in northern Syria, a Defense Ministry spokeswoman said on Tuesday, hours before an end to the pause period for Turkey’s cross-border operation, APA reports citing Anadolu Agency.

So far 136 vehicles have left the region since Thursday when Turkey and the U.S. agreed to the 120-hour pause in Turkey’s Syria operation in order to allow the withdrawal of YPG/PKK terrorists from the planned safe zone, Lt. Cmdr. Nadide Sebnem Aktop told reporters in Ankara, Turkey’s capital.

"While the Turkish Armed Forces fully abide by the agreement [with the U.S.] on the establishment of a safe zone, 42 harassing fire/violations were carried out by YPG/PKK terrorists so far," Aktop said.

Turkey always reserves the right to self-defense against the harassment/violations, which are instantly shared with the U.S, she stressed.

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

The pause for the anti-terror operation will end Tuesday night.

In talks Thursday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence also agreed on Turkey having a safe zone 32-kilometer (20-mile) deep south of the Turkish border in northern Syria.

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