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Turkish Concerns Complicate Anti-Daesh Campaign – US Gen. Dunford

© AFP 2021 / DELIL SOULEIMAN Fighters from the Syrian Democratic Forces
Fighters from the Syrian Democratic Forces - Sputnik International
Turkish concerns regarding the Syrian Democratic Forces and the Arab component are probably the most complex part of the US-led anti-Daesh campaign, according to General Joseph Dunford.

Mevlut Cavusoglu. File photo - Sputnik International
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WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Building a Syrian-Arab fighting component against the Islamic State, or Daesh, while managing Turkey’s sensitivities to such armed groups, is among the more difficult elements of the military campaign, US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford said on Tuesday.

"As I speak about growing the Syrian Democratic Forces and the Arab component, one of the things we are particularly sensitive to is Turkish concerns about the Syrian Democratic Forces and the Arab component," Dunford stated in a speech at the Center for Strategic International Studies in Washington, DC.

Dunford added that "managing that aspect of the campaign is perhaps, probably the most complex part of the campaign."

Turkey, a US and NATO ally, has questioned the growing military relationship between the United States and the Syrian Kurds, which Ankara perceives as a threat. As a result, Turkey has in recent months shelled Kurdish positions along the northern Syrian border with Turkey.

The United States has found an effective partner in the Kurdish forces in both Syria and Iraq, which it is arming and training as part of the indigenous Arab fighting component of the campaign against the Islamic State.

Russian officials have repeatedly called on Turkey to end its assault on Kurdish forces fighting in northern Syria.

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