You are here: Home » Companies
Business Standard

Turkey criticises France, US for commenting on 30-days Syria ceasefire

Turkey informed the French authorities that their statement showed a "lack of candour" and made the error of "misinforming public opinion"


Syrian Civil War
FILE PHOTO: Syrian Civil War

Turkey today sharply criticised France and the United States for arguing a ceasefire in Syria should apply to its military operation against Kurdish militia, as new tensions mounted between Ankara and its NATO allies.

The United Nations Security Council, crucially including regime ally Russia, has agreed on a 30-day nationwide ceasefire in Syria although this has yet to be implemented or end the violence in rebel-held Eastern Ghouta.

Turkey has welcomed the ceasefire but repeatedly insisted any truce will not affect its over the month-long operation in the Afrin region against Kurdish militia Ankara believes to be terrorists.

French President Emmanuel Macron told his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan in telephone talks Monday the ceasefire must be applied across the country "including in Afrin," the French presidency said.

But the Turkish foreign ministry Wednesday accused Paris of giving a false readout of the conversation, saying Macron did not refer to Afrin in the discussion on the ceasefire.

It said Turkey had informed the French authorities that their statement showed a "lack of candour" and made the error of "misinforming public opinion."

In Washington meanwhile, US State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert also insisted that the ceasefire did apply to the Afrin operation.

"Turkey is more than welcome to go back and read the exact text of this UN Security Council resolution, and I would suggest that they do so," she said.

Nauert argued that only campaigns against Islamic State jihadists, Al-Qaeda and other extremist Islamist groups were exempted from the ceasefire.

The Turkish foreign ministry said in a separate statement that Nauert's comments were "devoid of any basis", insisting that the Afrin campaign was a fight against "terrorists" and a matter of self-defence for Turkey.

Turkey's operation against the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) militia has raised tensions with Washington, which works closely with the YPG in the fight against jihadists in Syria.

Ankara sees the YPG as the Syrian branch of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which for over three decades has waged an insurgency against the Turkish state and is banned by Turkey, the US and the European Union as a terror group.

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.

We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

First Published: Wed, February 28 2018. 22:46 IST

Notice: Undefined index: seconddigit in /usr2/unibs/library/Site/Article/Processor.php on line 160