Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Wednesday, August 21st, 2019

Turkey Not Satisfied by US Proposal for A Syria Safe Zone

Turkey Not Satisfied by US Proposal  for A Syria Safe Zone

ANKARA, Turkey — Turkey said Wednesday that a new proposal by the United States concerning the creation of a possible “safe zone” in northern Syria was not “satisfactory” and suggested it would launch a new offensive in Syria to secure its border if an agreement is not reached soon.
Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu spoke as a delegation led by U.S. envoy James Jeffrey held talks with Turkish officials in Ankara to discuss Syria, including the possibility of setting up a safe zone along the border with Turkey.
Turkey views the Kurdish fighters who have battled alongside the United States against the Islamic State group as terrorists and wants the safe zone established west of the Euphrates River to keep them away from a border region. It also argues that a safe zone will provide a secure area for Syrian refugees to return.
Turkey has launched two cross-border offensives since 2016 against Islamic State militants and Kurdish fighters. It has recently been sending troop reinforcements to its border region, signaling a possible new offensive.
Speaking to reporters at a joint news conference with his Nicaraguan counterpart, Cavusoglu said the U.S. delegation had arrived with new proposals concerning the safe zone, including possible joint patrols and “who would be in it and who would enter.” He did not provide further details.
The two sides remain divided on the size of the zone, who would control it and the “total removal” of the main Kurdish militia from the zone. Turkey has said that the safe zone should be controlled by the Turkish troops.
“The United States must come with proposals that are satisfactory to us or are close to our proposals,” Cavusoglu said, adding that Turkey’s patience “has run out.”
“Our wish is for a safe zone to be established soon ... otherwise we will do whatever is necessary ourselves,” he said. (AP)