Saturday, May 19, 2018

US to Support Kurds in Manbij against Turkey

US to Support Kurds in Manbij against Turkey
Kurdish sources reported on Saturday that the US forces have underlined in their meetings with the Kurdish officials that they will remain in Manbij as differences have widened between the American and Turkish militaries over the presence of Kurdish forces in the town.

The Kurdish-language Hawar news quoted the military command council of Manbij as saying that a meeting was held between an official delegation of the US-led coalition forces' command center and a number of Kurdish commanders in Manbij.

The meeting on the political and security situation of Manbij was held in the presence of William Urback, a representative of the US state department, Commander of the US-led coalition General Jimmy Gerrard, Commander of the Kurdish forces in Manbij Mohammad Mostafa, Spokesman for Manbij's military council affiliated to the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) Sharfan Darwish and Deputy Commander of Manbij military council Ibrahim Banawi.

It added that the US forces have underlined their continued presence in cooperation with the Manbij military council until they prevail control over the entire region.

Meantime, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has several times threatened that he will send his forces to Manbij after driving out the Kurds from Afrin.

Darwish had announced earlier this month that the US forces have set up a new military base in Manbij in Northern Syria at the borders with Turkey.

He said that the French forces have been stationed in the military base with the aim of monitoring and protecting the borders, adding that the base has been established immediately after the Turkish army and its allies' attacks on the Kurdish forces in Afrin and Ankara's repeated threats to enter Manbij.

Experts say military assessments show that establishment of a new military base in Manbij that comes in the backdrop of US President Donald Trump's pullout pledge will exacerbate tensions between Washington and Ankara.
 (FNA)
 19/5/18

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