Under recent deal with U.S., the YPG would withdraw from Manbij and Turkish and U.S. forces would maintain security and stability around the town
Kurdistan is a region straddling northern Iraq, Western Iran, eastern Turkey and parts of Syria and Armenia. Some 30 million Kurds inhabit the region, and have struggled for decades recognition, influence, and an independent nation-state.
Israel was the lone regional voice supporting an independent Kurdistan, while the U.S., U.K. and Russia favored a unified Iraq as well. "A stable and unified Kurdish entity in the middle of this swamp, is not a bad idea," Netanyahu said in September. The prime minister added that while Israel sees the Kurdish guerillas PKK as a terrorist organization, "it supports the legitimate efforts of the Kurdish people to achieve their own state."
After the referendum, the Iraqi government led a military campaign to retake areas held by the Kurds, the city of Kirkuk becoming the initial flashpoint. After several military defeats the Kurds have largely backed down in their bid for independence and have yet to declare their own state.
A combative president, Erdogan enjoys considerable support in the conservative and pious heartland, having empowered previously disenfranchised groups
According to the Turkish government, troops are also advancing towards the Qandil mountains
Turkey already carries out regular cross-border air strikes against the PKK in northern Iraq
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Ankara considers the YPG a terror group tied to a Kurdish insurgency within Turkey and has demanded the Kurdish fighters leave Manbij for over a year
Sources say the prime minister has delayed the vote until after the Turkish election so as not to aid Erdogan's campaign
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