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EU Council chief: Turkey’s 5-day halt of military operations ‘not a ceasefire’

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European Union Council President Donald Tusk on Friday said the halt of Turkish hostilities announced in northern Syria is not a genuine ceasefire and called on Ankara to immediately stop military operations in Syria, Reuters reported.

Turkey agreed on Thursday to pause its offensive in Syria for five days to let Kurdish forces withdraw from a “safe zone” Ankara had sought to capture.

“The so-called ceasefire is not what we expected. In fact, it’s not a ceasefire, it’s a demand of capitulation of the Kurds,” Tusk told journalists in Brussels.

“We have to reiterate our call to Turkey to put a permanent end to its military action immediately and withdraw its forces and respect international humanitarian law.”

Turkey launched a military operation in northeastern Syria on Oct. 9 targeting Kurdish militia.

US Vice President Mike Pence met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Thursday and brokered a five-day ceasefire to allow the Kurdish forces to leave designated areas.

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