Published: Fri, May 05, 2017
World Media | By Joan Schultz

Turkey deploys 'anti-Kurdish' reinforcements to Syria amid escalation

Turkey deploys 'anti-Kurdish' reinforcements to Syria amid escalation

US troops were seen Saturday in armored vehicles in Kurdish areas of Syria, a show of force apparently meant to dissuade Turkey and Syrian Kurdish forces from attacking one another.

United States armoured vehicles were deployed in areas in northern Syria along the tense border with Turkey, a few days after a Turkish airstrike that killed 20 US-backed Kurdish fighters.

Last week, Turkey struck at YPG positions inside Syria, killing 20 fighters and media activists, according to the group, prompting Kurdish parties to call for a US-enforced no-fly-zone over northern Syria.

Pentagon spokesman, Jeff Davis said:"We have United States forces that are there throughout the entirety of northern Syria that operate with our Syrian Democratic Force partners". The Kurdish fighters are close to the Kurdistan Workers' Party in Turkey, which is an insurgent group designated as a terror organization by North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the U.S. Turkey conducted airstrikes against the group in Syria and Iraq on Tuesday, prompting clashes.

The United States has deployed service personnel to Turkey's border with Syria to serve as a buffer between Ankara-led forces and Kurdish fighters, a source with the People's Protection Units (YPG) told Sputnik Turkey, speaking on condition of anonymity.

USA troops deployed along the border with Turkey between the Kurdish majority city of Qamishli and the Turkish town of Nusaybin, another source said. "For its part, the USA has promised to make every effort to stop further assaults", the source said.

USA troops have since been seen patrolling the tense border. "But in reality Erdogan has obtained nothing for now", he said. The Trump administration needs to figure out how to keep one of the most effective groups in the campaign against ISIS from being killed by one of our major allies in the region, a country that is also supposed to be committed to the fight against ISIS.

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The difference of opinion over YPG has cast a shadow over US-Turkish relations for some time, and Erdogan is hoping for a drastic change in American policy when he meets President Donald Trump next month.

The People's Protection Units are distrusted by Turkish-backed anti-government forces in Syria, who say the group is an ally of President Bashar Assad's government.

"The strikes are manifestly a sign of impatience by Turkey and part of a long line of appeals telling the USA to stop supporting the YPG", said Jean Marcou, professor at Sciences Po Grenoble and associate researcher at the French Institute of ANatolian Studies.

Turkey has made clear it will use force to prevent the development of a Kurdish-controlled area on its Syrian doorstep.

An RT Documentary crew filming in northern Syria has seen Islamic State (IS, ISIS/ISIL) documents abandoned by retreating terrorists and found by the Kurds that, along with captured IS recruits, provide a stunning insight into the ISIS oil trade.

Erdogan said the sight of American flags in the convoy alongside YPG insignia had "seriously saddened" Turkey. The YPG is a component within the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a "stalwart" partnered force, according to Coalition spokesperson US Col. John Dorrian.

"We hope that this military mobilisation is not meant to provoke our forces or for another goal linked to entering Syrian territories". Moreover they acted without any approval of the USA -led coalition. In a statement, the SDF said it had captured six more neighborhoods in addition to the radio station building from ISIS in the city of Tabqa, west of Raqqa.

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