ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in a statement early on Wednesday warned that all signs indicate that the Turkish army and its allied forces would soon attack SDF points at the border.
“The border areas of northeast Syria are on the edge of a possible humanitarian catastrophe,” the General Command of the SDF said.
“All indications, field information, and military assembly on the Turkish side of the border indicate that our border areas will be attacked by Turkey in cooperation with Syrian opposition tied to Turkey.”
The SDF claimed this attack could “spill the blood of thousands of innocent civilians because our border areas are overcrowded.”
The military leadership called on the international community and all countries in the US-led coalition against the Islamic State “to carry out their responsibilities and avoid a possible impending humanitarian disaster.”
Another source close to the SDF told Kurdistan 24 that Turkey could launch a possible attack on Wednesday with airstrikes and troops in the area of Tal Abyad and Ras al Ain (Serekaniye).
Pentagon Correspondent for Foreign Policy, Lara Seligman, in a tweet also noted that “US and Kurdish officials say they expect Turkey to launch an attack on northeast Syria within the next 24 hours.”
Nicholas A. Heras, Middle East security analyst at the Washington-based Center for a New American Security, told Kurdistan 24 that “Turkey needs to strike fast to create facts on the ground so that it can make it impossible for Trump to change his mind. The coming days will be decisive, either Turkey invades northeast Syria, or the Americans walk Trump back.”
He added, that “ISIS will try to take advantage of the crisis caused by Turkey to strike the SDF and the Coalition anywhere it can.”
“The US policy is without a doubt one that will lead to great chaos and for all intents and purposes it is a green light for Turkey to dismantle the SDF.”
Ankara’s swift action comes amidst high tensions with Washington as US President Donald Trump gave a hasty order to pull a small number of American troops from several key positions on the Syria-Turkey border after a phone call over the weekend with Erdogan.
Editing by Nadia Riva