Turkey threatens further strikes on US-allied Syrian Kurds

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Turkish military has relocated a convoy of armored vehicles and personnel carriers to a base near the border with Syria amid rising tensions with the US-backed Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) forces in the far northeastern corner of Syria.

On one hand, further clashes between Turkish and Kurdish forces in Syria could potentially undermine the USA -led war on the Islamic State group. He said he would discuss the issue at a meeting with US President Donald Trump next month.

The YPG is a key component of the Syria Democratic Forces (SDF), a US -backed alliance of Arab and Kurdish fighting groups involved in a campaign to drive Islamic State out of its Syria stronghold, Raqqa.

Uzumcu said that the area of the town of Khan Sheikhoun where the incident happened is controlled by opposition rebels, adding that the watchdog experts will "need to strike some deals with them", such as a temporary ceasefire, to assure the team's safety before it can deploy.

In an unusual move after days of border clashes between the Turkish army and YPG that followed the air strikes, the United States sent military vehicles to the Syrian side of the frontier to carry out patrols in an apparent bid to prevent further fighting.

"Now the Americans face the delicate task of trying to answer some of the concerns of the Turkish government, while at the same time maintaining the YPG as a key component in the fight against ISIL", Ahelbarra said.

The Turkish military said the strikes, of which local governments as well as the USA and Russian Federation had been notified, were meant to prevent the PKK from sending terrorists, arms, ammunition, and explosives to Turkey.

Turkey considers the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) a terrorist organization and sees the Kurdish forces in Syria as connected to the PKK.

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Journalist Mohammed Hassan, who published some of the images, did not provide the exact location where they were taken, saying only that USA troops were spotted between Rojava and Turkey.

The US has been complaining that Turkey is attacking without proper coordination with their coalition partners, which is doubly concerning for the Pentagon because US forces are often embedded with the YPG in anti-ISIS operations and general training missions. The Tabqa Dam is located 25 miles west of Raqqa, and supplies electric power to a wide area of Syria, according to the U.S. The area has been under ISIS control since 2013. "We will not allow efforts to form a terror corridor at our southern border".

"The patrols' goal is to discourage escalation and violence between two of our most trusted [counter-ISIS] partners and reinforce the US commitment to both Turkey and the SDF in their fight against ISIS", a statement from the USA -led joint command said about efforts against the Islamic State.

"We are seriously concerned to see USA flags in a convoy that has YPG rags on it", Erdogan told reporters at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport before leaving for a two-day visit to India.

A video shows two customised pick-up trucks equipped with bullet proof shields and machine guns lead a military cavalcade.

"We hope that this military mobilisation is not meant to provoke our forces or for another objective linked to entering Syrian territories". The outlet notes that there is a presence of at least 200 U.S. Marines in northern Syria that arrived in the region in March, in addition to the already existing presence there.

Khalil said that his forces were not building up in the area.

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