Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu calls the US decision to back the YPG, a “big mistake” at the Munich Security Conference.
US support of the YPG is “a big mistake” and risks the future of Syria, Turkey’s foreign minister said on Sunday at the Munich Security Conference.
“Choosing a terrorist organisation to defeat Daesh or another terrorist organisation is a big mistake,” Mevlut Cavusoglu said at a panel discussion at the conference.
“It is not only about the threat towards Turkey. It is about the future of Syria,” he said.
PKK and its Syrian offshoot YPG had captured large parts of northern Syria, after receiving US military aid.
Cavusoglu said that the PKK/YPG are not a genuine representative of the Syrian Kurds. He added it pressured rival groups in northwestern Syria and forced thousands of Kurds to leave their country.
“And now they are confiscating all the properties of these people. This is outrageous and unacceptable,” he said.
The US administration has called the PKK/YPG a reliable ally in its fight against Daesh, despite strong protests by Turkey.
PKK/YPG in collusion with Daesh
Cavusoglu added that recent developments in the region proved that YPG was not seriously fighting Daesh, but was pursuing its own goal in the region.
“We saw in Raqqa how they cooperated, how they made deals,” he said, referring to a secret deal last year which enabled thousands of Daesh fighters to leave the city, the former stronghold of the terrorist group in Syria, without any fight.
The secret deal was revealed late last year by the BBC and then was then subsequently widely reported by a host of other media groups, which revealed that around 400 Daesh militants were released from prisons in Raqqa, Afrin and Deir Ezzor, on the condition of fighting against Turkey.
“And now YPG releases all Daesh elements, they stand shoulder to shoulder against Turkish troops,” Turkey’s foreign minister said.
On January 20, Turkey launched Operation Olive Branch to secure its borders and remove terrorist groups, including the YPG/PKK and Daesh, from northwestern Syria.