Turkey’s deputy prime minister says his country supports the ceasefire agreement for Syria but suggests that its military could continue firing on Syrian Kurdish groups in Syria if their militia “attack” Turkey.
Turkey has been shelling US-backed Syrian Kurdish militia positions in Syria, maintaining that it is responding to attacks or provocations.
Numan Kurtulmus tells journalists on Tuesday: “We hope that the PYD will not attack Turkey after Saturday. Of course, Turkey has the right to defend its territory.” He is referring to the Syrian Kurdish group, the Democratic Union Party.
Turkey views the US-backed PYD and its armed wing, the YPG, as terrorists because of their affiliation with Turkey’s own outlawed Kurdish rebels.
Kurtulmus also said that while Turkey welcomes the provisional truce agreed for Syria, it has “reservations and fears” about possible continued Russian airstrikes on civilians.