Turkey, US still discuss Manbij issue: State Dept. Spox

Turkey, US still discuss Manbij issue: State Dept. Spox
# 16 March 2018 03:27 (UTC +04:00)

Turkey and the U.S. are still working on the stabilization of Manbij, the State Department spokesperson said on Thursday, APA reports quoting Anadolu agency.

Asked whether it is the U.S. understanding that Turkey and the U.S. agreed on Manbij, Heather Nauert told reporters at a press briefing that the two countries have “a lot of conversations” at this point.

“We're still working to reach an agreement with Turkey at this point, and we're not done talking with them,” Nauert said.

During Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's visit to Turkey, Feb. 15-16, three mechanisms were established between Ankara and Washington. They are to normalize bilateral relations and overcome issues related to Syria, the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) and Iraq.

On Friday, Turkey and the U.S. discussed Turkey’s demand to clear YPG/PKK terrorists from Manbij, which lies to the west of the Euphrates River in northern Syria, during a “positive” meeting of the first of three technical committees.

The U.S. has supported the YPG/PKK under the name of SDF, which is considered by Ankara as the Syrian offshoot of the PKK terror organization that has waged a more than 30-year war against the Turkish state.

American support for the terror group has long vexed Ankara, as Washington views the SDF as a "reliable partner" in its fight against Daesh and continues to provide it with arms and equipment in the face of strong objections by Turkey.

The PKK has fought a 33-year war against Turkey that has resulted in tens of thousands of deaths.

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