Turkey: Ties with America will be fixed, or they'll break down
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu says Washington has made several mistakes in handling its relationship with Ankara
Turkish soldiers carry the coffin and hold a photo of Koray Karaca, a soldier who was killed in cross-border clashes with Kurdish People's Protection Units forces in Syria, during a funeral ceremony. Pic/AFP
Relations between Turkey and the US, strained by American support for the Syrian Democratic Forces, are close to breaking down, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Monday. Declaring bilateral ties at a "critical point", Cavusoglu said, "We will either fix the ties or they will break down completely."
Speaking to the press in Istanbul following a meeting with African leaders, he said Washington had made several mistakes in handling its relationship with Ankara, including giving support to the Kurdish militia in Syria known as the People's Protection Units (YPG). "We want concrete steps (from the US). The missing trust needs to be restored. The reason for that missing trust is the US," Cavusoglu was quoted as saying by the Hurriyet Daily News.
"The US is not touching Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) members in Syria as an excuse to continue working with the YPG/PKK (Kurdistan Workers' Party) terrorist groups," he added. Turkish troops launched an air and ground offensive against YPG-held Afrin in northwestern Syria on January 20. Ankara treats the Kurdish militants as terrorists associated with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party.
Turkish troops launched an air and ground offensive against YPG-held Afrin in Syria