US arms to Kurdish YPG threat to Turkey says Turkish FM

Female fighters of the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) stand at attention at a military camp in Ras a-Ain January 30, 2015. (Rodi Said/Reuters)

Every weapon obtained by the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) constitutes a threat to Turkey, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Wednesday, emphasising Ankara’s opposition to a US deal to arm the fighters against Islamic State.

Cavusoglu, who was speaking to reporters while on a visit to Montenegro, said the YPG was a terrorist organisation, the same as the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), and that the United States knows this.

He said President Tayyip Erdogan would discuss these issues with President Donald Trump when he visits Washington next week. Cavusoglu’s comments were carried live by state broadcaster TRT Haber.

Meanwhile Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Nurettin Canikli on Wednesday called the US arming Kurdish fighters in Syria “unacceptable”.

Despite fierce opposition from NATO ally Turkey, US President Donald Trump approved supplying arms to Kurdish YPG fighters to support an operation to retake the Syrian city of Raqqa from Islamic State, US officials said on Tuesday.

(Reuters/Kom News)