02:57 GMT +313 November 2019
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    Members of the special forces of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) are pictured during preparations to join the front against Turkish forces, on October 10, 2019

    Syrian Foreign Ministry Welcomes Withdrawal of SDF Troops From Syrian-Turkish Border

    © AFP 2019 / Delil Souleiman
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    DAMASCUS (Sputnik) - The Syrian Foreign Ministry welcomed on Sunday the withdrawal of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces from the Syrian-Turkish border.

    "The Syrian Arab Republic welcomes the withdrawal of armed groups 30 kilometres [about 19 miles] from the Syrian border with Turkey in full coordination with the Syrian government troops. This withdrawal deprives Turkey of justification of its brutal aggression against our territories," the ministry said, as quoted by the Ikhbariya broadcaster.

    The ministry stressed that the Syrian government was ensuring the security of all of the country's citizens.

    "The Syrian Arab Republic will work to accept all its children and provide them with assistance, including re-integration in the Syrian society, which will leave space for restoring the Syrian unity," the statement added.

    Earlier in the day, the SDF announced the complete withdrawal of troops from the border area.

    "After intense discussions of our objections with Russia, we agreed to fulfil the initiative on the termination of the Turkish aggression in northeastern Syria … The SDF will take new positions, far from the Syrian-Turkish border to avoid bloodshed and protect the region’s population,” the SDF statement, obtained by Sputnik, said.

    The SDF stressed that the Syrian government border guards will be deployed to the Syrian-Turkish border.

    The withdrawal of the SDF troops was also confirmed by the Syria TV and Ikhbariya broadcasters.

     Russian President V. Putin Meets with Turkish President R. T. Erdogan
    © Sputnik / Ramil Sitdikov
    Russian President V. Putin Meets with Turkish President R. T. Erdogan

    On 9 October, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced the launch of Operation Peace Spring in northern Syria. The offensive is part of Ankara's goal to clear its Syria-facing border area of terrorists and the terrorist-designated Kurdish militia as well as create a safe zone for the relocation of Syrian refugees, who are currently residing in Turkey.

    Following the talks between Erdogan and Russian President Vladimir Putin, a Russian-Turkish memorandum was signed on October 22 in Russia's Sochi, which stipulates that within 150 hours Kurdish militia would be withdrawn to a distance of 30 kilometres from the border with Turkey to the west and east of the operation zone.

    Tags:
    Russia, Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Turkey, Syria
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