Syrian Kurds Say They Are ‘Ready to Fight Turkey’

Shahoz Hasan, co-chair of the largest Kurdish group in Syria the Democratic Union Party, or PYD, says it’s clear from Ankara’s latest statements that Turkey has a plan to enter northeastern Syria

People's Protection Units (YPG) soldiers in Northeast Syria.
Andia / UIG via Getty Images IL

A top Syrian Kurdish official says his fighters are prepared to confront Turkish forces if they enter northeastern Syria.

Shahoz Hasan, co-chair of the largest Kurdish group in Syria the Democratic Union Party, or PYD, says it’s clear from Ankara’s latest statements that Turkey has a plan to enter northeastern Syria.

He says: “We will be ready.” he says.

Areas of control in Syria
AP graphics

Hasan spoke on Tuesday to The Associated Press as White House national security adviser John Bolton was in Turkey to negotiate the fate of America’s Kurdish allies amid a planned U.S. troop withdrawal from Syria.

Shortly after Bolton’s meetings and in an apparent snub to the U.S. diplomatic push, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Ankara’s preparations for a new military offensive against terror groups in Syria are “to a large extent” complete.

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Turkey will not seek permission to carry out any operation in Syria, although it is willing to coordinate with allies, President Tayyip Erdogan's spokesman said on Tuesday.

Ibrahim Kalin made the comment at a news conference after he met U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton. Earlier Erdogan rebuked Bolton for demanding that Turkey does not harm Kurdish fighters in Syria, a group Turkey regards as terrorists.