ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) - The Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) announced on Tuesday that they would withdraw their military advisers from the key Syrian city of Manbij, claiming no YPG fighters are present in the city.
In a statement received by Kurdistan 24, the US-backed YPG stated that, after the liberation of Manbij from the Islamic State (IS), it handed over the security to Manbij Military Council (MMC) and officially withdrew its fighters on Nov. 16, 2016.
It also mentioned that, at the request of the MMC, a group of YPG military trainers remained in Manbij to provide training and consultation to local forces.
The statement notes that, after more than a year of training, the General Command of the YPG decided to withdraw its military advisers from Manbij.
The withdrawal announcement comes a day after Turkey and the United States said they had agreed on a plan for the northern area that included a YPG withdrawal.
Turkey has been infuriated by Washington’s support for the YPG in Syria, which Ankara views as a ‘terrorist’ organization.
Over the past few months, Turkey has repeatedly threatened to push its offensive in the Syrian Kurdish region of Afrin in northern Syrian further east to Manbij, risking a confrontation with US troops stationed in the area.
The US views the YPG as a key ally in the fight against the Islamic State (IS).
Editing by John J. Catherine