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    Fighters from the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) inspect the damage at their headquarters after it was hit by Turkish airstrikes in Mount Karachok near Malikiya, Syria April 25, 2017

    State Department Accuses Turkey of Putting US Forces at Risk in Strikes on Kurds

    © REUTERS / Rodi Said
    Middle East
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    US Department of State spokesman Mark Toner said Thursday that by carrying out strikes against strikes against Kurds in Iraq and Syria, Turkey has put American troops operating in the region at risk.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Turkey put US forces at risk during its most recent strikes against Kurds in Iraq and Syria, and must fully coordinate such actions with the United States in the future, US Department of State spokesman Mark Toner told reporters on Thursday.

    "We made very clear to the Turkish government at very high levels our deep concern about the actions they took the other day," Toner said. "Not only were they fully coordinated, or not coordinated, within the coalition, but they put, frankly, US soldiers at risk, who were operating in that area, but also resulted in the deaths of, for example, Iraqi Peshmerga who are fighting on the ground."

    Toner stressed the United States will continue to press the case with Turkey that all of the forces fighting Daesh (outlawed in Russia) in that region need to focus on the goal to combat the terror group.

    "We understand Turkey’s concerns about [Kurdish People’s Protection Units] YPG, we disagree," Toner said.

    The YPG are the military branch of Syria's Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD).

    Toner added that Washington is making very clear to the Turkish government it needs to fully coordinate with the United States and other coalition members going forward.

    On Tuesday, Turkish jets struck YPG positions in northern Syria and Iraq. Turkey's General Staff said about 70 Kurdish fighters were killed as a result of the airstrikes.

    Ankara considers the PYD to be affiliated with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which is listed as a terror group in Turkey, the United States and the European Union.

    However, the PYD and the YPG, as well as the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have been receiving support from the United States in fighting tDaesh.


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    Kurds, airstrike, Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), Turkey, United States
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