Kurdish forces withdraw from Turkey-Syria border
October 21, 2019 - A senior Kurdish official says his forces are complying with a U.S.-brokered ceasefire and are completing the withdrawal of forces from along a section of the shared border with Turkey.
Redur Khalil told The Associated Press Monday that Turkey however continues to violate the ceasefire, accusing its troops of shelling a village at dawn and seeking to carry out military operations.
He said the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces are preparing to complete the withdrawal from the area between Ras al-Ain and Tal Abyad towns, which flank the 120km area under the ceasefire. He said the U.S. guarantor however has not forced Turkey to stick to the agreement.
Khalil called for an international mechanism to protect Kurdish residents who want to stay in their towns after Kurdish-led fighters leave.
Most civilians have pulled out from the Kurdish-dominated town of Ras al-Ain, fearing revenge or repression from Turkey-backed forces. Turkey said it wants to return Syrian refugees to the evacuated areas, raising concerns over changing the demographic make-up of the area.
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