Turkey's president says he expects his upcoming visit to Washington will constitute a new "milestone" for the troubled relations between the two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies.
Commanders in the Syrian Kurdish militia, the YPG, and the USA -led coalition against the Islamic State say Washington's decision to send more arms to the YPG will accelerate their advance into Islamic State's de facto capital, Raqqa.
After meeting with Yildirim in London, Defense Secretary James Mattis said he has "no doubt" that Turkey and the U.S.
The SDF is dominated by the Kurdish People's Protection Units [YPG], seen by the USA as an indispensable ally in the fight against IS but considered a "terrorist group" by Turkey. He said the battle for Raqqa would begin once the group receives the weapons from the USA military, adding that he expects the fighters to storm the city in the coming weeks.
The Syrian Democratic Forces scored one of their biggest victories against IS militants as controversy intensified over a U.S. decision to arm the alliance's Kurdish component. "We never have and never will", Mr. Mattis added, noting the White House "agree [s] 100 percent with Turkey's concern about PKK".
Ankara views the YPG as an extension of the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, which has been waging a decades-old insurgency in Turkey.
Some 70 Islamic State fighters conceded to the terms of the Syrian Democratic Forces and left the area.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan launched an intervention previous year to push back both the YPG and Isis from Turkey's border and has been angered by the US-led coalition's continued links with Kurdish separatists.
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"If a negative decision is taken, its consequences will not only be against Turkey but have a negative impact on the US, too", Yıldırım said.
The Levant Liberation Committee, which often fights alongside of rebels against Syrian pro-government forces, says the so-called "de-escalation" agreement signed between Russia, Turkey, and Iran earlier this month is a "betrayal" of Syria's 2011 uprising.
Erdogan, who had a fraught relationship with former president Barack Obama, said his meeting with Trump next week would be decisive. Turkey, along with the USA and Europe, lists the party, known as the PKK, as terrorist organization.
Shortly before Erdogan's comments, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu asserted that "every weapon seized by [the YPG] is a threat to Turkey", including those that the United States provides. "A negative outcome will also emerge for the United States". "We don't believe America would choose a terror group over our strategic relations", he said. He also said that once it starts it will not be publicly acknowledged by the U.S.
"The (Syrian Democratic Force), partnered with enabling support from US and coalition forces, are the only force on the ground that can successfully seize Raqqa in the near future", White said.
Cavusoglu said President Recep Tayyip Erdogan would take up the issue with President Donald Trump during a visit to Washington planned for next week.
Warplanes from the US-led global coalition have been backing a wide scale operation from Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in Raqqah and its vicinities to drive ISIS out of the region. In a report published Thursday, the Turkish state-run Anadolu News Agency describes the PKK as an "umbrella organization" that "franchises" itself to regional affiliates, making global support of their subgroups more palatable.