U.S. Vice President Mike Pence will soon depart for Turkey to hold talks with top officials regarding Ankara’s ongoing Operation Peace Spring in northeastern Syria, President Donald Trump said Tuesday.
Pence will be accompanied by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo when he departs Wednesday, Trump said in remarks delivered at the White House.
A U.S. delegation will leave Tuesday ahead of the departure of the senior officials, according to the president
Turkey remands four trying to recruit children for PKK
Four people have been remanded in custody after trying to kidnap two children to recruit them for the PKK terror group, police said on Wednesday.The four suspects were caught on Friday following a technical and physical surveillance, said a police statement, adding that they were remanded into custody after being referred to a local court.Video: Operation Peace Spring in northern SyriaA large number of digital materials and documents related to the terror group were seized at the addresses raided to arrest the suspects.The children were delivered to their families, police said.In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the European Union -- has been responsible for deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children and infants.PKK continues to be Europe's favorite terror groupWest holds onto lies it crafted about YPG
Turkey's anti-terror operation rightful: Experts
Pakistani security and political experts said Turkey's counter-terrorism operation in northern Syria would ensure durable regional peace and security."Turkey's operation to secure its borders is justified. Like any other sovereign country, Ankara is within its right to secure its people and borders," Ikram Sehgal, a Karachi-based defense and security analyst, told Anadolu Agency."No sovereign country can allow terrorists to operate on its borders, and pose a permanent threat to its security," he said.Video: Orthodox Jews in US support Turkish Peace Spring OperationTurkey launched Operation Peace Spring on Oct. 9 to eliminate terrorists from northern Syria in order to secure Turkey’s borders, aid in the safe return of Syrian refugees, and ensure Syria’s territorial integrity.Ankara wants to clear northern Syria east of the Euphrates River of the terrorist PKK and its Syrian offshoot, the PYD/YPG.Turkey has said the PKK terrorist group and its extension the YPG/PYD constitute the biggest threat to Syria’s future, jeopardizing the country’s territorial integrity and unitary structure.Ankara has also stressed that supporting terrorists under the pretext of fighting Daesh is unacceptable.Turkey remands four trying to recruit children for PKKIn its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S., and the European Union -- has been responsible for deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants.Terming the refugee influx into Turkey and subsequently to Europe due to terrorists' presence in broad swathes of northern Syria, Sehgal said that a successful operation in the region would pave the way for safe and early repatriation of over 1.5 million refugees to their homes."It [elimination of terrorists] will ultimately benefit the whole region, including Syria, Turkey and Europe," he added.US has to work with Turkey on their terms, says expertHailing President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's assurance that the territorial sovereignty of Syria will be fully respected, Sehgal said he hoped that the Operation Peace Spring would be culminated as soon as possible achieving the desired results.Retired Brig. Said Nazir Mohammad, an Islamabad-based defense analyst, voiced a similar view."Turkey is facing the brunt of refugees as the EU is not accepting them," Nazir noted adding that Ankara has been facing a threat from PKK, that's why it wants to create a safe zone along with its border to ensure the safe return of refugees.YPG/PKK terror attacks kill six civilians in SyriaThe safe zone near Turkey border, he said, was actually created by the UN, but was being challenged by Daesh, Syrian Army, al-Qaeda affiliates and a moderate Kurd opposition."Since YPG is a terrorist outfit and being supported by the U.S and Israel, Turkey is worried of the Balkanization of Syria with a Kurd state to be carved out along eastern and southeastern borders," he said suggesting that Pakistan should operate in a gray area of diplomacy and for a peaceful settlement with an aim to respect the territorial integrity of all states."The Turkish operation blatantly exposes U.S. hypocrisy where it was allied with the YPG," said Arhama Siddiqa, a research fellow covering the Middle East at Islamabad-based Institute of Strategic Studies.PKK continues to be Europe's favorite terror groupShe added that the Turkish Operation Peace Spring exposed the ''faultiness between President [Donald] Trump and Pentagon where they keep contradicting each other.''"We saw this in the Qatar-Gulf crisis as well," she said.Syed Fakhar Kakakhel, another Islamabad-based political analyst, said: ''It is obvious that Turkey is the one, which is close to the war theater and the most affected by terror attacks.''"Turkey knows much better than the rest of the world how to deal with Syrian crisis," Kakakhel told Anadolu Agency adding that Pakistan itself has faced the brunt of Afghan war for decades.In that perspective, he said, Ankara had every right to move for its own and the region’s security and stability.'Turkey's Syria operation is clearing away terrorists'EU not planning economic sanctions on Turkey: Berlin
The vice president's office released a statement adding Pence will be further accompanied by National Security Advisor Robert O'Brien, and Trump's special envoy for the anti-Daesh coalition James Jeffrey.
The talks will begin Thursday, the office said, and Pence is set to meet with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan during a bilateral meeting.
"The Administration is resolved to maintain security in the region, the safety of civilians, and the continued detention of ISIS fighters," the office said, using another name for the Daesh terrorist organization.
YPG/PKK terror attacks kill six civilians in Syria
Six civilians were killed and 15 injured by terrorist YPG/PKK artillery fire and heat seeking missiles in residential areas in northern Syria, once occupied by Daesh terrorists -- now cleared by Turkey's anti-terror Operation Euphrates Shield.Terrorists targeted the Gandura neighborhood of the Jarabulus district, held by Syrian armed opposition.Six civilians were killed in the attack, with 13 injured.Turkey remands four trying to recruit children for PKKTurkey's anti-terror operation rightful: ExpertsThe YPG/PKK terrorists also attacked Azaz district, firing four artillery shells which wounded two additional civilians.On Monday, the terror organization injured three children in a separate attack on Jarabulus, located in the Operation Euphrates Shield zone.Operation Euphrates Shield and its successors, Operation Olive Branch in 2018 and Operation Peace Spring -- launched on Oct. 9 -- all aim to eliminate terrorist elements near Turkey’s borders, including Daesh and the YPG/PKK.US has to work with Turkey on their terms, says expertYPG/PKK terror attacks kill six civilians in Syria
PKK continues to be Europe's favorite terror group
While the EU continues to oppose Turkey's anti-terrorism efforts in northern Syria, the bloc's institutions and member countries continue harboring members of the PKK, despite it being on the EU terror list.Most-wanted PKK terrorists are frequent participants in events of the European Parliament.According to the Terrorism Situation and Trend Report 2019 by EU police agency Europol, the PKK has been forcefully collecting funds from Kurdish businesses in Europe, while partaking in drug and human trafficking activities across the continent.US VP, top diplomat to visit Turkey for talksSchools suspended in north Syria amid PKK/YPG shellingIn 2015, Europol recognized the existence of PKK training camps in Belgium, as well as the foothills of the Alps in Switzerland in 2017.PKK-linked associations, foundations and media groups in France were found to easily be able to disseminate the terrorist organization's propaganda.The report found that many groups with ties to the PKK were also present in Belgium, where it said the terrorists' so-called Europe leaders resided.According to the German government, hundreds have left the country to join the ranks of either the PKK or YPG, with the total being 204 in 2017.US trained SDF for possible Turkish operation: reportTurkey not worried over sanctions, says ErdoğanPKK terrorists in the U.K. were found to operate as an organized criminal group, committing such crimes as drug and human trafficking.Greece and the Greek Cypriot administration are known to openly support the PKK.The PKK/PYD has an representative office in Greece and the Lavrion refugee camp southeastern Greece continues to be under PKK control.The Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Austria are also among the countries where the PKK is able to conduct activities with no serious repercussions.Europe's tolerance, and at times support, towards the PKK is harshly criticized by Turkey, which accuses Europe of ignoring its security concerns.Suicide car bombing in Afghanistan kills two soldiersAnkara accuses Europe of being insincere in counter-terrorism, due to its criticism of Turkey's fight against the PKK.Turkey on Oct. 9 launched Operation Peace Spring to secure its borders by eliminating terrorist groups there, to ensure the safe return of Syrian refugees and Syria’s territorial integrity.Ankara wants to clear northern Syria east of the Euphrates of the terrorist PKK and its Syrian offshoot, the PYD/YPG.In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S., and the European Union -- has been responsible for deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children and infants.Turkey neutralizes 637 YPG/PKK terrorists in Syria