Turkey and the US have agreed a plan on the withdrawal of Washington-backed Kurdish militants from the northern Syrian city of Manbij, which has been a source a tension between the two NATO allies for months.
In a joint statement issued on Monday, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that they had considered “taking steps to ensure the security and stability in Manbij” during a meeting in Washington.
“They endorsed a road map to this end and underlined their mutual commitment to its implementation, reflecting their agreement to closely follow developments on the ground,” the statement read.
Cavusoglu told a press conference in Washington that the Manbij road map is aimed at clearing the city of “all terror organizations and the permanent instatement of safety and stability.”
Firstly, he said, the road map focuses on “common plans for the removal of YPG-PYD from Manbij – you can also call it PKK.”
“In the long term, this road map that will implemented in Manbij will be carried to other regions to implement security and stability in other regions in Syria. Meaning the cooperation will continue in other regions,” he added.
Ahead of his visit to Washington, the top Turkish diplomat denounced the US alliance with the YPG as a “grave mistake,” saying, “They (the Americans) have preferred to work with that terrorist organization in Syria.”