US special envoy to the anti-ISIS coalition Brett McGurk with YPG leaders in Kobani. Photo: CBS
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan expressed his fury at a recent visit made by America's special envoy to the anti-ISIS coalition Brett McGurk to Kobani, asking how Ankara could trust Washington again.
Since then US-led air power has assisted them on offensives against ISIS and even helped them close off all of Syria's northeastern frontier with Turkey (by expanding through the border-city of Gire Spi last summer) much to Ankara's consternation.
"He [McGurk] visits Kobani at the time of the Geneva talks and is awarded a plaque by a so-called YPG [Syrian Kurdish Peoples Protection Units] general?" Erdogan said, according to AFP, while returning from a visit to Latin America on Sunday.
"How can we trust [you]?" he asked of the Americans rhetorically.
"Is it me who is your partner or the terrorists in Kobani?" he added angrily.
"Do you accept the PKK as a terrorist organization? Then why don't you list the PYD and the YPG as a terrorist organizations, too?" he added.
Turkey views the YPG, and the group’s political wing the Democratic Union Party (PYD), as little more than the Syrian wing of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).
The YPG have been the foremost US ally on the ground in the fight against ISIS in Syria. They began ad-hoc coordination during the siege of Kobani by ISIS militants.