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US condemns, warns Turkey against plans for military operation in Syria

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The State Department on Tuesday criticized Turkey’s plans to conduct a military operation in northern Syria after the Turkish president said he wanted to create a 20-mile “safe zone” along the southern border with Syria.

“We expect Turkey to live up to the October 2019 Joint Statement, including to halt offensive operations in northeast Syria,” State Department Spokesman Ned Price said during a briefing.

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Adding that the US recognized Turkey’s security concerns along its southern border, Price said any new offensive would undermine regional stability and “put at risk US forces in the Coalition’s campaign against ISIS.”

Price said the US condemned any escalation in the area and said all sides needed to respect ceasefire zones.

Turkey has long deemed US-backed Kurdish fighters in northern Syria as “terrorists” and said they present a security threat to Ankara.

Read more: US lifts sanctions on foreign investments in northern Syria, not Assad regime

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