TEHRAN (defapress)- Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and US State Secretary Rex Tillerson held constructive talks in Ankara and agreed to normalize relations.
News ID: 68715
Publish Date: 17February 2018 - 12:43
"We are agreed on normalizing relations again," Cavusoglu said after talks with his US counterpart in Ankara, saying that ties were at a "critical phase" and vowing to create "mechanisms" to discuss the issues causing problems, Sputnik reported.
Ankara and Washington agreed on the establishment of a mechanism for the normalization of relations, Cavusoglu said at a joint news conference with Tillerson on Friday.
Ankara expects Washington’s guarantees of the withdrawal of the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) from the Syrian city of Manbij to the Eastern bank of the Euphrates, Cavusoglu said.
“The problem around YPG is one of the most important for us. More than 100 our citizens were killed in attacks by YPG. Back in 2016, the US promised us the withdrawal of YPG from Manbij to the Eastern bank of the Euphrates. (Former US President Barack) Obama said it, but he did not keep his promise. Now we must have guarantees … that they will relocate across the Euphrates… Let us start with Manbij. After YPG leaves it, this will be a guarantee for us, and then we will move forward,” Cavusoglu said.
"We take it seriously when our NATO ally says it has security concerns, we have been always clear to Turkey that our support to SDF will be limited," Tillerson said speaking at a press conference with his Turkish counterpart in Ankara.
The United States recognizes Ankara's right to secure its borders, but calls on Turkey to show restraint in its operation in Syria's Afrin and not to escalate tensions, Rex Tillerson said.
Tillerson is in Turkey with a two-day visit. The US top diplomat held talks with Turkish President on Thursday, whereas earlier in the day he met with Cavusoglu.
The statement comes a day after Ankara urged the US to remove the Syrian Kurdish YPG from the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
On January 20, the Turkish Armed Forces announced the beginning of Operation "Olive Branch" against the Kurdish forces in Syria's Afrin district. The operation has been conducted together with Free Syrian Army opposition forces. Syrian government has condemned the operation as an assault on countries sovereignty.
Tensions between the US and Turkey has intensified amid the operation in Syria's Afrin. Ankara and Washington define terrorist organizations in different ways, Washington does not consider the YPG as a terrorist group.