04:46 GMT +316 October 2019
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    Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) fighters walk with their weapons, north of Raqqa city, Syria November 6, 2016.

    Raqqa's Liberation by Kurdish-Led SDF Not to Strengthen Peace in Region

    © REUTERS / Rodi Said
    Middle East
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    Seizing of the Syrian city of Raqqa by the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) will not contribute to peace in the region, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus said on Monday.

    ANKARA (Sputnik) – The operation to liberate Raqqa will be the second major offensive against Daesh this fall. On October 17, Iraqi troops supported by the Kurdish Peshmerga units and US-led coalition airstrikes launched an offensive to retake Mosul, the main Daesh stronghold in Iraq.

    “The Arab population prevails in Raqqa, Aleppo, Mosul – these cities must belong to their residents. Nobody will profit from changing their demographic structure. Seizing of the Arab Raqqa by non-Arab [Kurdish] forces will not contribute to peace in the region,” Kurtulmus told journalists in the Turkish capital of Ankara.

    SDF, formed in 2015 as the defense force of northern Syria's de facto autonomous Rojava federation and supported by the US-led coalition, announced the launch of a military operation to liberate Raqqa from Daesh on Sunday. SDF urged international and regional forces to support the operation, dubbed Euphrates Rage.

    Daesh, a terrorist organization outlawed in Russia and a number of other states worldwide, took over vast swathes of Syria and Iraq in 2014.


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    Kurds, Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Numan Kurtulmus, Turkey, Iraq
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