THE US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin expressed to Turkish counterpart of Hulusi Akar his “strong opposition” to new large-scale Turkish ground operation in Syriaexpressing concern over the recent escalation of violence in the border region, according to a press release issued by his services.
During a telephone conversation with his counterpart, Mr. Austin also expressed his condolences to the victims of the November 13 terrorist attack in the heart of Istanbul, according to the US Pentagon statement.
He also “expressed concern about the escalating action in the north Syria”, especially its “recent airstrikes”. Turkey“some of which directly threatened the safety of US (military) personnel working with local partners in Syria to defeat IS” (sic the jihadist organization Islamic State).
The US Secretary of Defense called for “de-escalation” to be preferred and added that he “shares the strong opposition of the State Department” in the possibility of starting new large-scale ground operations of the Turkish army in Syria.
Maria Zakharova called the “main obstacle” in this process “the US military presence”arguing that “the Americans support the separatist sentiments of some Syrian Kurdish leaders, openly toeing the line of cutting off from Damascus these temporarily uncontrolled territories of the Syrian government, which are rich in oil and other natural reimgs.”
“We have said it repeatedly. In our contacts with the representatives of the Kurds, we consistently follow the thought that it is counterproductive and not prudent to bet on the alliance with Washington instead of forming normal cooperation with the central government of Syria. We will continue the work”, concluded the representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry.
Source: News Beast
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