13:08 GMT +319 July 2019
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    EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini speaks to the press

    EU Foreign Policy Chief Urges Turkey to Refrain From Military Operation in Syria

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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini on Saturday commented on Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's plans to conduct a military operation in the east of Syria, urging Ankara to refrain from any unilateral actions in the area.

    On Friday, Erdogan said that Ankara was ready to launch an operation in the Syrian Manbij against the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) if the United States does not withdraw them from the area. Erdogan discussed the situation in Syria with Trump on the same day.

    "We expect the Turkish authorities, therefore, to refrain from any unilateral action likely to undermine the efforts of the Counter-Daesh [alternate name for the Islamic State terrorist group, outlawed in Russia] Coalition or to risk further instability in Syria. As the fight against Daesh is entering its final stages, all parties must work towards the goal of ensuring its upcoming defeat, which remains an indispensable objective for any durable solution to the Syrian crisis," Mogherini said.

    She noted that the European Union was concerned over Erdogan's statements.

    "We expect all parties to respect at all times their international obligations to protect civilians, and allow humanitarian access," the EU official added.

    READ MORE: Turkish, US Presidents Discuss Future Operation in Syria — Erdogan's Aide

    The Turkish authorities view the YPG as an affiliate of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), listed as a terrorist organization in Turkey, the United States and the European Union. Ankara has been claiming that the YPG presence near its border hampers its national security.

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    Tags:
    Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), Donald Trump, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Federica Mogherini, Syria, Turkey
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