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Turkey says its new operation in Syria not depending on US troops withdrawal

14:40, Thursday, 10 January, 2019
Turkey says its new operation in Syria not depending on US troops withdrawal

Ankara’s plans to carry out a new military operation in Syria are not related to progress of the US troops’ pullout, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told NTV channel on Thursday.

"Whether they leave or not, we will still do everything necessary to ensure our national security and protection from terrorist organizations. Our operation does not depend on the US troops’ withdrawal," Cavusoglu said.

Washington began its military operation against the Islamic State in Iraq in June 2014 and in Syria - in September 2014.

While on a visit to Israel last week, Trump’s National Security Adviser John Bolton said it was important that the withdrawal of US troops from Syria did not endanger those who had fought against the Islamic State (outlawed in Russia) and other terror groups together with the US. He particularly meant the Syrian Democratic Forces, the bulk of which is made up of the Kurdish People's Protection Units.

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