Tillerson says U.S. discussing Syria security zone

"Turkey's measures against the YPG can not be limited to Afrin alone".

Ever since the American remarks about a "border army" in Syria, Turkey has been threatening to take action.

Turkey considers the US -backed Kurdish militia in Syria a terror organization because of its affiliation to Turkey's own Kurdish insurgency. The US is arming and training the Kurds as a bulwark against ISIS, but also as an obstacle to Iran's ambitions in Syria; Iran's Kurds would also like to break away and someday reunite with Kurds in Iraq, Syria and Turkey.

The operation puts Turkey at odds with the USA, which has logistically supported the Kurdish fighters as part of the fight against Islamic State.

A senior Turkish official declined to give a timeframe for the operation but said it would "move fast", adding that Turkey believed there was some local support in both Afrin and Manbij for its action.

Tillerson also tried to retain an IS-relevant basis for extending the USA presence by linking the Syrian regime to the group.

"We can not repeat the mistake of 2011, where a premature departure from Iraq allowed al-Qaeda in Iraq to survive and eventually become ISIS", said Tillerson.

His remarks came amid Turkey's ongoing military operation against terror groups in the Afrin region.

During a meeting with Barzani, Ali Shamkhani, the secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, addressed attacks made by Kurdish forces against Iranian border guards.

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US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Washington had proposed working with Turkey and forces on the ground in Afrin to "see how we can stabilise this situation and meet Turkey's legitimate concerns for their security".

President Tayyip Erdogan has overseen a sweeping crackdown since a failed coup in 2016 that critics say has unjustly targeted pro-Kurdish politicians.

He has also said that the YPG militia could not rely on Washington's support to defeat Turkey.

On Monday, the Afrin villages of Shankal, Qorne, Bali and Adah Manli were reportedly captured, along with rural areas including Kita, Kordo and Bibno, according to Turkey's state-run Anadolu news agency. Second, stabilizing Syria's border security and undermining Iranian influence through sharing power with Russian Federation.

54 fighters have been killed in the battle in Syria's Afrin region.

Ankara said the United States had to stop backing the YPG if they wanted cooperation.

"I'm extremely anxious and will discuss this among other things with our Turkish interlocutors", Mogherini said after a regular meeting of European Union foreign ministers where the issue was raised, adding that she was concerned about the impact on civilians and on the UN-backed Syrian peace process.

"We are in the framework of looking at the possibility of sending more military forces to Afrin", SDF spokesman Kino Gabriel said in a televised news conference, calling for worldwide efforts to halt the Turkish attack.

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