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US has not seen any sign of airstrike in Syria: Official

ANI | Updated: Oct 08, 2019 03:57 IST

Washington [US], Oct 08 (ANI): A senior United States official on Monday said that Washington has not seen any sign of airstrike in Syria by Turkey, reported Sputnik.
"The [US] President [Donald Trump] after learning of the intended Turkish operation, although we have not seen the operation taking place as of now, made it clear and rightly made it clear as Commander in Chief that our small number of troops in the relatively small 20 to 30 mile safety zone of border region in northern Syria should not be endangered," the official said on Monday.
"We have 50 to 100 special operators in the region and they should not be put at risk of injury, death or capture in the event that the Turks come to the border and engage in combat with the local Kurdish forces."
However, the White House is yet to comment on the issue officially.
Earlier in the day, Syrian media reported that Turkey air force launched an airstrike on a military base of Arab-Kurdish units of Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) destroying two bridges in Syria's Hasakah Province.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on October 5 announced that Ankara will launch a military operation in Syria in order to clear the border area of Kurdish militants.
However, the United States has made it clear that it will not support Ankara in its operation. Moreover, US President Donald Trump has also warned Turkey against launching an attack, saying Washington will "totally destroy and obliterate" Turkey's economy if the country does anything he considers "off-limits" during their planned operation in Syria.
Amid suspicion that Turkey is launching an offensive, Washington ordered to withdraw its troops stationed in Syria.
More than 1,000 US troops had been deployed in northeastern Syria, where they work closely with the Kurdish YPG, which leads the Syrian Democratic Forces in the region.
The Kurds have proven to be among Washington's most effective allies in the fight against the Islamic State (ISIS) that has its stronghold in northern Syria.
Erdogan has repeatedly expressed frustration with Washington's close alliance with the Kurds, along his country's border with Syria, linking them to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which is a designated terrorist organisation in Turkey. Washington also labels the PKK a terrorist group, but not the YPG.
The US, in an effort to reduce tensions in the region, has been working on establishing a safe zone along the border.
However, the plans have faltered, and the Turkish President in recent days has warned that Ankara will soon be launching a military operation across the border, as soon as within the next couple of days.
Meanwhile, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in a telephonic conversation with his Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif has termed Turkey's actions in Northern Syria 'temporary measure'.
"During the telephone conversation,Mevlut Cavusoglu stressed that Turkey respects the territorial integrity of Syria, saying that Turkey's step in this region [in the northeast] is temporary," the ministry said in a statement. (ANI)