ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) - Army Colonel Sean Ryan, spokesman for the US-led Coalition, called on Turkey to “synchronize their efforts” following Turkish cross-border shelling on Tal Abyad and Kobani, Tuesday and Wednesday respectively.
“In regards to the statement made by President Erdogan, we encourage all military partners and coalition members to synchronize their efforts to ensure our members can continue to operate safely,” Ryan told Kurdistan 24.
“We understand Turkey’s concern for the safety of their citizens, and the Coalition goal remains the same, the enduring defeat of ISIS, and it is best to work and communicate together,” he added.
On Tuesday evening, Turkish cross-border shelling in Tal Abyad killed one and injured another fighter following threats made by Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who announced a possible upcoming offensive against Kurdish forces who are engaged in the war against the so-called Islamic State (IS).
On Wednesday morning, cross-border shelling continued in villages near Kobani on the border and in the Arab majority town of Tal Abyad. Reportedly, villagers in those areas were injured.
“Turkey’s attack on Kobani and Tal Abyad in the North is benefiting ISIS in the Euphrates basin region. This indirect help of Turkey needs to stop, and Turkey’s NATO allies bare the responsibility to pressure and demand of [Ankara] to stop these unprovoked attacks,” Bassam Ishak, who represents the Syrian Democratic Council (SDC)’s political bureau in Washington, told Kurdistan 24.
“Turkey has not hidden its desire to invade Syria’s east of the Euphrates as it did in Afrin. Such invasion, if it were to take place, would destroy the Kurdish community and the historical indigenous Christian community in the north and northeast of Syria,” he argued.
“The east of the Euphrates of Syria must not be abandoned by NATO to Turkey, as Afrin was abandoned by Russia. The international coalition, led by the US, needs to immediately engage Turkey diplomatically to stop these attacks and to do all possible to prevent a Turkish military takeover of any part of northeastern Syria.”
Senior Syrian Kurdish official, Abdulkarim Omer, in a press conference on Wednesday in Brussels, called on the international community and US-led coalition to intervene and put a stop to the military provocations.
“As we attend this press conference,” he stated, the Turkish state is now engaging in aggressive acts in the region. “The goal of Turkey is to pressure the SDF into withdrawing from the frontlines with ISIS, and to go north, to the Kurdish border,” he claimed.
He also noted that the Turkish attacks aimed to “reduce the pressure on terrorist groups in Hajin.”
“We condemn these attacks on this region, and we call on the international community to end their silence,” he added.
A spokesperson for the French government on Monday expressed worries over Turkey’s attacks on the border.
“We are concerned by the Turkish bombing targeted yesterday against the northeastern part of Syria liberated from Daesh, and in particular the Kobani region. We call on Turkey and all of the parties involved to exercise the utmost restraint,” the spokesperson said.
“As underscored by the heads of state and government of France, Germany, Russia, and Turkey during the Quadrilateral Summit held on Saturday at Turkey’s invitation, there can be no military solution to the Syrian conflict,” the statement continued.
“Our priority remains the fight against Daesh, which the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) are continuing with our support.”
Editing by Nadia Riva