Berlin hopes that Turkey will not resume its military operation in northern Syria after a five-day truce and the parties will start peace negotiations, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas stated on MondayBERLIN (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 21st October, 2019) Berlin hopes that Turkey will not resume its military operation in northern Syria after a five-day truce and the parties will start peace negotiations, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas stated on Monday.
On Thursday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and US Vice President Mike Pence reached an agreement on a 120-hour ceasefire in north Syria to allow the withdrawal of the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) from the Turkish border area. However, both Ankara and the Kurds have accused each other of violating the truce.
"The main goal, for now, is to ensure that Turkey will not resume its offensive after a five-day ceasefire and to find a political solution. We are working on the issue through a dialogue with the parties, including Turkey," the minister said at a press conference following talks with his Belarusian counterpart, Vladimir Makei.
"We told Turkey that we need to do everything we can to find a political solution to the conflict after the termination of the ceasefire. At the same time, we should take into account Turkey's security interests," Maas added.
As for the possibility of the European Union's engagement, including the involvement of the German military, in humanitarian operations after peace restores in northern Syria, Maas said that it was too early to discuss such options.
Turkey launched the controversial cross-border Operation Peace Spring in northern Syria on October 9 in an attempt to build a safe zone and clear the area of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which Ankara regards as a terrorist group. The offensive has faced widespread condemnation from across the globe. Despite the ceasefire deal, Erdogan vowed to continue the operation unless the US kept its promise concerning the withdrawal of allied Kurdish forces.