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Despite start of US-Turkey joint patrols, Erdoğan cites disagreements on safe zone

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, speaking hours after joint US-Turkey patrols began in northern Syria, said on Sunday Ankara and Washington have constantly disagreed over establishing the planned “safe zone,” according to Reuters.

“We are negotiating with the US for the safe zone, but we see at every step that what we want and what they have in mind are not the same thing,” he said. “It seems that our ally is looking for a safe zone for the terrorist organization, not for us. We reject such an understanding.”

The safe zone region is mostly controlled by Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) forces, US allies that Ankara has labeled as terrorists.

President Erdoğan in August said Turkey would launch its own operation to establish a “safe zone” in Syria if talks with the US failed to give Turkish troops control of the area within a few weeks.

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