U.S. equating Kurds with PYD/YPG 'fatal mistake': Turkey

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"Will devastate Turkey economically if they hit Kurds", Trump tweeted, while pushing for the creation of a 20-mile "safe zone".

"Although we made a clear agreement with U.S. President Trump, different voices are emerging from different parts of the administration", Erdogan said as Bolton prepared to leave town after meeting other Turkish officials.

President Donald Trump said Sunday the United States would "devastate Turkey economically" if the NATO-allied country attacks Kurds in the region.

"The mission in Syria is not yet complete and we must continue to work with our partners and allies to ensure that ISIS is destroyed and never returns", Graham said using another acronym for the Daesh terrorists.

Pompeo's remarks follow tensions between the United States and Turkey over the fate of Washington's allies in the fight against ISIS.

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The delay has restricted Turkey's ability to launch an offensive against the YPG, a group of Kurdish fighters it considers terrorists, but who served as allies to the US coalition to defeat Islamic State.

It considers the YPG and its political wing, the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD), to be "terrorist groups" with ties to the banned Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) in Turkey.

"Starting the long overdue pullout from Syria while hitting the little remaining ISIS territorial caliphate hard, and from many directions".

The U.S. withdrawal has begun with shipments of military equipment, U.S. defense officials said.

The US military, Trump promised, will still use an "existing nearby base", apparently in Iraq, to attack the Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) militants if the terrorist organization re-emerges in Syria.

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The Turkish government has said Kurdish fighters are linked to a group that has been mounting an insurgency against the Turkish state for decades.

"We also know that those fighting alongside us for all this time deserve to be protected as well", he added.

The previous week, Trump's National Security Advisor John Bolton had announced that Washington would withdraw its troops from Syria only after defeating ISIS and ensuring that the Kurds are safe. That drew a rebuke from Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan who called his comments "a serious mistake".

He said the USA envoy for Syria, Jim Jeffrey, had traveled to northeast Syria this week and would soon go to Ankara for talks, including on moving forward a UN-led political process to end the eight-year long conflict in Syria. He said many details around the troop withdrawal still need to be ironed out, but that he was optimistic a "good outcome" could be reached between Turkey and Kurdish groups in Syria.

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