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Rudaw

Middle East

Washington urges Turkey to stop shelling Syrian Kurds

By Rudaw 14/2/2016
US State Department spokesman John Kirby. Photo: AFP
US State Department spokesman John Kirby. Photo: AFP

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region—Washington has urged Turkey to stop shelling Syrian Kurds across the border, asking both sides to de-escalate the situation north of Aleppo.

"We are concerned about the situation north of Aleppo and are working to de-escalate tensions on all sides," US State Department spokesman John Kirby said Saturday.

Kirby also advised the People's Protection Units (YPG) against taking advantage "of a confused situation by seizing new territory."

"We have also seen reports of artillery fire from the Turkish side of the border and urged Turkey to cease such fires," Kirby stressed.

He called on Turkey and the YPG to focus on their common enemy, the Islamic State (ISIS).

"We continue to encourage all parties to focus on this common threat, which has not subsided," Kirby said.

Turkish artillery shelled YPG positions on Saturday including the Menagh airbase, which was seized by the Kurdish forces from their Islamist rivals on Thursday.

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu had warned earlier that Turkey would respond if the YPG did not leave the airbase, south of Azaz near the Turkish border.

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Brzoo Kurdi
Brzoo Kurdi | 14/2/2016
the Terrorist state of turkey is helping Hamas and Isis ,they will see that ,that is not the way to be among civilized nations .
Brzoo Kurdi
Brzoo Kurdi | 14/2/2016
Turkey can not help Hamas to kill innocent Israeli on one hand ,and ask for friendship with the US on the other .they must choose and stop making life easy for Isis. they can not have all .
Cyaxares | 14/2/2016
Why should Turkey focus on fighting the Islamic State when they are on the Islamic State's side?
M Gonzales
M Gonzales | 14/2/2016
I urge the YPG reader's to not retaliate. It's a Trick too goad a reaction that would give legitimacy too a Turkish invasion of Rojava. The longer you can bear the artillery the more world pressure may build against Turkey.
T.I. | 14/2/2016
What does the gentleman from the State Department mean when he says they've advised YPG against seizing new territory? Why have they themselves helped YPG take "new" territory from ISIL for over a year? does the State Department know that the territory concerned is ISILs last life line? sure YPG will cut off the line to some other jihadis but is that suddenly bad? and better YPG than Assad's forces who will slaughter the local population.
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