Updated in: 19 January 2019 - 15:02
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TEHRAN (defapress)- President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey has reached an agreement with Russia over Ankara’s latest military operation against US-backed Kurdish militants in Northern Syria, vowing that his country would not retreat a step from the ongoing operation.
News ID: 68235
Publish Date: 23January 2018 - 14:47

Ankara in Agreement with Moscow over Military Operations in Afrin“We are determined. Afrin will be sorted out. We will take no step back. We spoke about this with our Russian friends. We have an agreement,” Erdogan added, Middle East News reported.

The Turkish leader asserted that Ankara had spoken with other powers, including the US, about the military intervention, but acknowledged that “we couldn't convince the US on some things".

Turkey’s Prime Minister Binali Yildirim had also said on Sunday Russia does not object to the operation in Syria’s Afrin, saying "We are working to eliminate Iran’s concerns, and Russia does not have objections".

Besides, he added, "Ankara supports communication with Damascus with mediation of Moscow and Tehran."

Turkey’s Operation ‘Olive Branch’ kicked off on Saturday from air and ground around the area of Afrin in Syria's Aleppo to oust the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), which Ankara views as a terror organization and the Syrian branch of the outlawed Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK).

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Sunday stressed that Turkish offensive in Afrin is part of Ankara's strategy based on supporting terrorists.

The Syrian government has condemned the “brutal Turkish aggression” against the Kurdish-controlled enclave of Afrin, rejecting Ankara’s claim about having informed Damascus of the operation.

The Damascus government had made clear to Ankara that it considers Turkey’s military presence on its territory as a violation of its sovereignty, and warned that it will shoot down Turkish bombers in Syrian airspace.

Washington also continues providing Kurdish fighters with more military hardware in Syria despite US President Donald Trump's promise to his Turkish counterpart to halt arms shipment to the Kurdish fighters.

Ankara said late November 2017 that US President Donald Trump told Tukey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that he had issued instructions that weapons should not be provided to Kurdish fighters in Syria.

According to reports, the US plans to keep its troops in Syria long after the defeat of ISIL. Washington has been justifying its deployment of ground troops in Syria, which violates the embattled nation’s sovereignty, by citing the need to fight ISIL.

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