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US, Turkey set talks to boost ties

Turkey sets up new observation post in Syria's HTS-held Idlib

The United States and Turkey support differing rebel groups fighting the Syrian government, while Russian Federation and Iran back Assad's government in the war. In Brussels on Thursday, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis met with his Turkish counterpart, while the national security adviser, Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster, met Sunday in Istanbul with Turkey's senior presidential adviser, Ibrahim Kalin.

Kurdish officials said they had informed the USA army about their contacts with Damascus, adding that "the Americans did not mind".

Turkey has threatened to attack US-allied Kurdish forces in Manbij, whom they regard as terrorists.

Relations between Washington and its main Muslim ally in North Atlantic Treaty Organisation have been strained to the breaking point by several issues, above all Turkey's anger over US support for the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia, which Turkey sees as terrorists.

At a press conference with Cavusoglu, Tillerson urged Turkish forces to ease up on their ongoing offensive against the YPG in Syria's Afrin enclave, which has been under the control of Syrian Kurds.

As Turkish forces continue to pound the Kurdish militias entrenched in Syria's Afrin, the latter refute claims about making arrangements with the Syrian government in order to solve their current predicament.

The Syrian government has condemned the "brutal Turkish aggression" against Afrin, rejecting Ankara's claim about having informed Damascus of the operation. We're going to lock arms.

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Turkey on January 20 launched Operation Olive Branch to remove PYD/PKK and ISIL terrorists from Afrin.

The U.S. considers the Syrian Kurdish fighters the most effective fighting force in the battle to defeat the Islamic State in Syria, and this week offered a budget plan that would send them the bulk of $550 million in new assistance.

The US supports the Kurdish YPG, as a partner in the fight against the Islamic State in Syria.

In May 2017, Macron said he had set a "red line" at the use of chemical weapons.

The shelling took place in Northern Syria, near the Turkish border.

"We continue to have serious concerns about the detention of local employees of our mission in Turkey and about cases against USA citizens who have been arrested under the state of emergency", he said.

The Turkish military has once again denied allegations that civilians were being killed in the operation in a statement on Saturday.

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