Turkish EU Minister Omer Celik refuted allegations Wednesday that there had been a cease-fire agreement between Turkey and the PKK/PYD terror group, reported Anadolu Agency.
“The Republic of Turkey is an independent, lawful state,” said Celik. “It cannot be evaluated as if they [Turkey and PKK/PYD] were equal and there was an agreement between them.”
“PYD’s activities in northern Syria benefit terror groups, not Kurdish people,” said Celik.
Several media reports on Tuesday, citing U.S. officials, had said that a cease-fire had been agreed to between Turkey-backed Syrian rebels and PYD/PKK forces.
Ankara considers the PYD and its armed wing, the YPG, to be the Syrian offshoots of the PKK terror group, which has waged war on Turkey for decades, and has declared their presence west of the Euphrates a red line.
While Turkey considers the PYD to be the Syrian offshoot of the terrorist PKK organization, the U.S. sees the group as its ally in the fight against Daesh.
Operation Euphrates Shield, which was launched last week, is aimed at improving security, supporting coalition forces and eliminating the terror threat along Turkey’s border through Free Syrian Army fighters backed by Turkish armor, artillery and jets.