James Mattis: Turkey has valid concerns about Afrin

US Defence Secretary, James Mattis has reiterated the fact that Turkey has legitimate concerns along the Syrian border as many ranks and affiliates of Syrian Democratic Forces led by Kurds have shifted to Afrin despite the ongoing Turkish operation against the broader coalition of Syrian Kurds along the Syrian-Turkey border. US has always backed SDF as its ally against its fight with ISIS although Turkey has raised strong objections against it as Ankara views it as the Syrian offshoot of Kurdish Workers’ Party PKK which has been listed as a terrorist outfit by the US, EU and Turkey.

Latter has taken about 40,000 lives in Turkey since 2015. Mattis has recognised the fact that Turkey is facing an active revolt and thus has legitimate concerns in the region. It is no secret that PYD and PKK have launched many rocket attacks on Turkey across the border, the frequency of which was increased significantly last month.

Turkey had launched Operation Olive Branch to wipe out the cadres of PYD/PKK and ISIL from Afrin.


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