Macron tells Erdogan UN's Syria truce applies to Afrin

Turkey argues that the ceasefire does not affect their invasion of Afrin in Syrian Kurdistan.
author_image Ari Khalidi

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – French President Emmanuel Macron on Monday told his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan over the phone that a UN Security Council call over the weekend for a ceasefire across Syria also applied to the Kurdish region of Afrin.

“The President of the Republic stressed that the humanitarian truce applied to all of Syria, including Afrin,” Macron’s office said in a statement carried by Reuters.

“[It] should be implemented everywhere and by all without any delay to stop the ongoing spiral of violence that could lead to a regional explosion and push away any hope of a political solution,” the Élysée said.

Turkish sources cited by Turkey’s state media spoke of the two leaders’ concern for eastern Ghouta but did not mention Macron’s call regarding Afrin.

UNSC on Saturday voted unanimously in approval of a 30-day truce to allow for aid access and medical evacuations in Syria’s war-ridden zones.

Turkey has championed the resolution, particularly for its application on eastern Ghouta, a rebel-held suburb of the Syrian capital of Damascus, under massive air bombardments by the Russia-supported regime.

However, the Turks argued the ceasefire does not affect their invasion of Afrin where Turkish airstrikes and ground shelling have killed up to 200 civilians and displaced at least 60,000 others.

“When we look at [the UN decision], we see that the fight against terror organizations is outside its scope. Therefore, it will not affect Turkey’s ongoing operation,” Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag stated.

Unlike Turkey, none of the UNSC members labels the US-armed Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), which continues to fight off the Turkish army and its Syrian proxies, as “terrorist.”

Editing by Karzan Sulaivany