By Steve Dellar  |  01-15-2018   News
Photo credit: Twitter @NRT_English

The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) fighters, who are largely responsible for winning the war against ISIS in Syria and Iraq, will shortly be receiving training from US specialists in order to be able to defend the border zone that they have carved out for themselves.

Turkey, knowing that a large part of the SDF forces is of Kurdish origin, reacted furiously as soon as word of this plan started to spread.

The allied Kurdish-led militia would thus set up a 30,000-strong "border security force".

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/U?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#U</a>.S. transfers anti-aircraft missiles to <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Kurdish?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Kurdish</a> fighters in <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Afrin?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Afrin</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Turkey?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Turkey</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SDF?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SDF</a> <a href="https://t.co/zCDsgzGkB6">https://t.co/zCDsgzGkB6</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NRTnews?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NRTnews</a> <a href="https://t.co/WyZKVQlFQ2">pic.twitter.com/WyZKVQlFQ2</a></p>&mdash; NRT English (@NRT_English) <a href="https://twitter.com/NRT_English/status/952827113282985984?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 15, 2018</a></blockquote>

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Turkey's president Erdogan, who fears a Kurdish army at his southern border, has immediately reacted, stating he would "suffocate" efforts to begin training members of the SDF, calling them a "terror army".

Referring to the US, Mr. Erdogan said: “A country we call an ally is insisting on forming a terror army on our borders,”

“What can that terror army target but Turkey?”

“Our mission is to strangle it before it’s even born.”

Syria's government of Bashar Al-Assad also denounced the plan, describing it as a "blatant attack" on its territory, whilst Russia, who are giving air support to the Syrian regime of Assad, warned the US such a move could lead to partition.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Syria?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Syria</a> brands <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/US?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#US</a> &quot;border militia&quot; as illegal, and joining it as high treason <a href="https://t.co/NwcmkFGgLn">https://t.co/NwcmkFGgLn</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Rojava?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Rojava</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SDF?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SDF</a></p>&mdash; Al-Masdar News (@TheArabSource) <a href="https://twitter.com/TheArabSource/status/952836042436104192?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 15, 2018</a></blockquote>

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Meanwhile, the SDF coalition declared that "a strong border security force will prohibit ISIS’s freedom of movement and deny the transportation of illicit materials."

"This will enable the Syrian people to establish effective local, representative governance and reclaim their land."

Source:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-syria/erdogan-we-will-strangle-u-s-backed-force-in-syria-before-its-even-born-idUSKBN1F41HJ

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