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Syria Rejects U.S.-Turkish Safe Zone Agreement

Syria said on Thursday that it had rejected the U.S.-Turkish agreement to establish a safe zone in northern Syria.

The state news agency, SANA, quoted a statement by the Syrian Foreign Ministry branding the U.S. and Turkey as forces of occupation, saying the agreement, which was reached on Wednesday, constituted a flagrant violation of the international law and the UN Charter.

The ministry added that the Turkish-U.S. agreement was also considered a “dangerous escalation” threatening the peace and stability in the region and the world.

According to the ministry, the agreement undermines all efforts to find a way out of the Syrian crisis.

“This agreement has exposed the partnership of the U.S. and Turkey in the aggression against Syria,” the ministry noted.

The ministry also put the blame on the Kurdish groups which “agreed to be a tool in the aggressive Turkish-U.S. project”.

It said that such groups “hold a historic responsibility” for the development of the situation.

The Syrian government urged the international community to condemn the U.S.-Turkish “flagrant aggression”.

The U.S. and Turkey announced on Wednesday that the two countries agreed to “address Turkish security concerns” and work together on the establishment of a safe zone in northern Syria.

Their announcements, however, provided little detail about the agreement.

It is worth mentioning that the U.S.-backed Kurdish militias dislodged the Islamic State (IS) militant group from the Eastern Euphrates region, which now is largely controlled by the Kurdish forces with the presence of U.S. troops and military advisors.

Additionally, the Kurdish forces control areas near the Syrian-Turkish border in the northern countryside of Aleppo Province as well as the northeastern province of Hasakah.

Turkey deems the People’s Protection Units, the spine of the Kurdish forces in Syria, as a terror group belonging to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).

Ankara fears that the separatist sentiment of the Syrian Kurds could encourage the 14 million Kurds in Turkey and pose threats to its southern border where the PKK has been active for years.

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