Turkish FM: Obama, Kerry not keeping promises

Turkey’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlut Cavusoglu on Tuesday accused the President of the United States Barack Obama and the Secretary of State John Kerry of not keeping their promises.

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan24) – Turkey’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlut Cavusoglu on Tuesday accused the President of the United States Barack Obama and the Secretary of State John Kerry of not keeping their promises.

Speaking to the pro-government TV 24, Cavusoglu said both Obama and Kerry had promised Turkey not to allow the US-backed Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) to stay in the town of Manbij in northern Aleppo.

The YPG and its multi-ethnic surrogate alliance of Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) supported by US special forces on the ground and airstrikes from coalition warplanes liberated Manbij from the Islamic State (IS) in August after a two months-long campaign.

“Why is the US not keeping the promise it gave? For one thing, the head of a state should keep his word. A secretary of state should keep his word,” the Turkish FM said about Obama and Kerry.

Cavusoglu questioned whether the US “was not powerful enough to deal with,” adding he suspected the Obama administration was deliberately letting the Kurdish forces keep a foothold in Manbij.

Last week, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed to capture Manbij from the Kurds, which he declared belonged to Arabs.

“Are you trying to give territory to a terror group, found a terrorist state or a canton of terrorism?” Cavusoglu continued.

“Make it clear, if the terror group is an ally of yours, if you are supporting it, then let us consider you a state sponsor of terrorism,” he added blaming the US for the expansion of Kurdish control in Syria.

Turkey considers the YPG a terrorist group for having ties with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), a label the US officials have repeatedly rejected.

“You gave me your word. You have to keep it. Now that you have not, you further suggest working with the YPG in Raqqa?” Cavusoglu asked in an addressing tone to Obama and Kerry.

The Turkish FM claimed the YPG would engage in ethnic cleansing in the de facto IS capital of Raqqa if they controlled it.

“They [YPG] have a different agenda. They want to set up a terror corridor. Some say a Kurdish corridor, but we don’t say that. We have no problem with our Kurdish brothers,” concluded Cavusoglu who revealed Turkey would capture Manbij on its own.

 

Editing by Karzan Sulaivany