ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan24) – The United States Department of State said the Russo-American ceasefire plan for Syria that began at sundown on Monday applies to Kurdish forces and the Turkish army.
The US State Department Spokesperson John Kirby made the comments in a Washington daily press briefing shortly after the Syrian ceasefire – or “the cessation of hostilities” as dubbed by American officials – came into effect.
“We don’t want to see violence or clashes between Turkish forces and Kurdish forces,” said Kirby according to an online transcript of the briefing received by Kurdistan24.
“What we’ve said, and I’ll say it again today, is that we want them, as members of the counter-Da’esh coalition, to fight Da’esh, that that’s where their – we want their energies to be applied,” he added, using the Arabic abbreviaion for the Islamic State (IS).
Sporadic clashes have taken place between Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) and the Turkish Army.
In late August, the Turkish Army entered the town of Jarabulus to obstruct Kurdish territorial expansion in northern Syria and fend off IS from its southern border.
Turkey is supporting the Free Syrian Army (FSA) units and “moderate” Islamist groups on the ground and from the air in its incursion into a 90-kilometer corridor that stands between the Kurdish cantons of Kobani and Afrin.
The US-backed YPG and its multi-ethnic surrogate alliance of Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) already announced they would abide by the ceasefire.
They added they would refrain from offensive operations against all the warring factions except for IS and al-Qaeda affiliates.
Meanwhile, Russia’s Defense Ministry called on the Turkish-supported FSA to stop fighting Kurdish units in the run-up to the truce in Syria, according to international news agency Reuters.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany
(Reporting by Ari Khalidi)