February 9, 2019 / 06:25 PM
West sends weapons to YPG when Turkey needs same weapons: Erdogan

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has accused Turkey's western allies of arming terrorists and killers who target Muslims around the world.

"Those who give weapons to terrorists with blood-soaked hands create unimagined obstacles when Turkey seeks to buy the same weapons. From Daesh and PKK to Al Qaida and Al Shabaab, all terror organizations that shed the blood of Muslims have Western weapons in their hands," Erdogan said in Istanbul on Feb. 9 at the launch ceremony of a new test and training ship.

"The murderers of PYD/YPG, who conduct an ethnic cleansing in northern Syria, have the rockets, bombs and ammunition of our allies. Facing such a picture, Turkey cannot wait with tied-up hands or delegate its national security to other countries," he added.

Erdogan had signaled earlier this month that a cross-border operation against the YPG will happen soon. Since 2016, Ankara has carried out two similar military operations in northern Syria with the help of Free Syrian Army members, Hurriyet daily reported.

Although a military operation seems to have been shelved for now following President Donald Trump’s surprise decision to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria, Turkey has made clear that it will never tolerate the presence of the YPG on its borders even if it comes to an agreement with Damascus to maintain control of the east of Euphrates River.

On Feb. 9, Erdogan also said Turkey's military capabilities will "help its presence on the table" in its moves to end the war in Syria.

"Over the last three years, we have scored many large successes against terror groups, especially Daesh and the PKK, who target our citizens’ lives and try to divide our country," he added.

Reporter’s code: 50101