Turkish Moves in Syria Show Policy Shift & Politicking

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A fresh wave of Turkish tanks rolled into Syria yesterday, in an effort to both fight the Islamic State (also known as ISIS or ISIL) and to keep Kurdish forces in check. Concerns about the Syrian YPG – a primarily Kurdish military force operating in northern Syria and viewed by Turkey as an extension of its own Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) – gaining territory west of the Euphrates River, are part of a larger fear of an autonomous Kurdish region on Turkey’s border.

The United States shares Turkey’s former goal, but not the latter. However, “the United States would rather work with a country [Turkey] than with an entity [YPG]” to defeat ISIS, Soner Cagaptay tells The Cipher Brief.

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