EU follows Turkey, US talks on safe zone in Syria


European Union follows the talks between Turkey and the U.S. on a safe zone in Syria along Turkey’s border, an EU official said on Friday.

“Obviously, we do follow the discussions between the U.S. and Turkey and are trying to understand in more detail what this would mean and entail,” EU’s Foreign Affairs and Security Policy spokeswoman Maja Kocijancic said at a press briefing.

Kocijancic said the EU believes that “the goal needs to be to avoid any renewed armed hostilities” in Syria’s northeast.

She added that any sustainable solution to the conflict in Syria requires “genuine political transition in line with the relevant UN Security Council resolution.”

On Aug. 7, Turkish and U.S. military officials agreed to set up a safe zone in northern Syria and develop a peace corridor to facilitate the movement of displaced Syrians who want to return home. They also agreed to establish a joint operations center.

The agreement also envisaged setting up necessary security measures to address Turkey’s security concerns, including clearing the zone of the terrorist YPG/PKK, a group the U.S. has sometimes been allied with, over Turkey’s objections.

In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK — listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU — has been responsible for the deaths of nearly 40,000 people, including women and children. The YPG is the group’s Syrian branch.
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