No Concrete Plan With U.S. for Safe Zone in Northern Syria, Erdogan Says

Turkish president warns that while 'we are loyal to our agreements,' patience is not limitless

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses his Justice and Development Party at the parliament, in Ankara, Turkey, February 5, 2019.
,AP

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he had not yet seen an acceptable plan for the creation of a safe zone in northeastern Syria, three weeks after U.S. President Donald Trump suggested establishing one.

“There is no satisfactory plan that is put before us concretely yet,” Erdogan told a parliamentary meeting of his AK Party. “Of course we are loyal to our agreements, our promise is a promise. But our patience is not limitless.”

>> Read more: The absence of strategy in Washington's Syria policy ■ Working through the traumas of the Syrian civil war

Turkey wants the zone to be cleared of the Kurdish YPG militia, a main U.S. ally in the fight against Islamic State, which Ankara considers a terrorist group and an extension of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) that has waged a decades-long insurgency in Turkey.

Erdogan also said that if terrorists are not removed from the northern town of Manbij in a few weeks, Turkey’s waiting time will end.