Erdogan: there are no ongoing clashes in Syria
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that there were no ongoing clashes in northeastern Syria, where Turkey has been carrying out an offensive, after Ankara agreed with Washington to pause its offensive while Kurdish forces withdraw.
"I don’t know where you’re getting your news from. According to the news I received from my defense minister, there is no question of clashes. These are all speculation, disinformation," Anadolu Agency cited the Turkish leader as saying.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported fighting in villages near the northeastern Syrian city of Ras al-Ayn.
On October 9, Ankara announced the launch of Operation Peace Spring in northern Syria, which began with airstrikes on Kurdish positions. The operation’s goal is to create a buffer zone along the Turkish border, where, according to Ankara, Syrian refugees residing in Turkey could return.
On October 17, Turkey and the U.S. held talks in Ankara co-chaired by U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Turkey agreed to suspend its military campaign in northeastern Syria for 120 hours. Pence also noted that the parties had agreed on setting up a safe zone on the border with Syria.