Jun 01 2018

U.S. mortars pointed at Turkish Army

U.S. mortars in the northern Syrian town of Dadat, near Manbij, are pointed in the direction of the Turkish Army north of the city, according to two regional reporters, Jenan Moussa and Harald Doornbos.

"(U.S.) mortars in the garden of the American compound were pointed in the direction of Turkey’s army," the reporters wrote in an article published in the New York Times on Thursday.

Manbij is a flashpoint northern Syria city, where the Turkish government has been pushing for the withdrawal of the Syrian-Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG). Turkey labels the YPG as a terrorist organization linked to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), an armed Kurdish group recognized as a terrorist organization both by Turkey and the United States. 

Top Turkish officials have been stating that Ankara and Washington agreed on a roadmap, detailing how the Syrian Kurdish forces will leave Manbij. U.S. authorities, including the State Department's official spokesperson Heather Nauert and unnamed Pentagon official quoted by Al Hurra News, both deny existence of such an agreement. 

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu is expected to arrive in the United States to meet with Mike Pompeo, his American counterpart, on Jun. 4 to discuss a lengthy list of problematic issues including the future of Manbij.