US President Donald Trump has cautioned his Turkish counterpart to avoid any measures in Syria that “might risk conflict” between the two countries.
(AhlulBayt News Agency) - US President Donald Trump has cautioned his Turkish counterpart to avoid any measures in Syria that “might risk conflict” between the two countries.
According to a readout of the call with President Erdogan, Trump called on him “to deescalate, limit its military actions, and avoid civilian casualties and increases to displaced persons and refugees,” the White House said Wednesday.
“He urged Turkey to exercise caution and to avoid any actions that might risk conflict between Turkish and American forces,” the statement added.
Erdogan, for his part, asserted that Turkish forces in Syria are aiming to get rid of "terrorist elements" and protect Turkey's national security.
Turkey has launched "Operation Olive Branch," a new air and ground operation targeting the Afrin region, to oust the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), which Ankara views as a terror organization and the Syrian branch of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
The US president further slammed Ankara’s rhetoric in regard to Washington’s support for terrorism.
“Trump also expressed concern about destructive and false rhetoric coming from Turkey, and about United States citizens and local employees detained under the prolonged State of Emergency in Turkey,” the White House said.
Turkey's latest move has opened a new front in crisis-hit Syria amid concerns that it could harm the Muslim country’s sovereignty.
The operation in the Afrin region is Turkey's second major military intervention in Syria during an unprecedented foreign-backed militancy that broke out in 2011.