Wed, 23 Oct 2019

TEHRAN (Tasnim) - Syrian Kurds operating in northern Syria may open talks with Damascus and Russia to fill a security vacuum in the event of a full withdrawal of US forces from the Turkish border area, a Syrian Kurdish official said on Tuesday.

- World news -

"If America vacates the area and especially the border area for certain we, as a self-administration and as the SDF, will be forced to study all the available options," Badran Jia Kurd told Reuters.

"At that time we may hold talks with Damascus or the Russian side to fill the void or block the Turkish attack, so this may develop and there could be meetings and contacts in case of a vacuum," he said.

Turkey said on Tuesday it had completed preparations for a military operation in the northeast.

The United States withdrew 50 American special forces from a section of the Turkish border on Monday, opening the way for Turkey to stage a long-threatened incursion against Kurdish forces.

A senior Syrian government official, in return, said Damascus was ready to welcome Syria's Kurds back into the fold after Washington left them to face Turkish military threats alone.

"We will defend all Syrian territory, and we will not accept any occupation of Syrian land," Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad told the pro-government and Arabic-language al-Watan newspaper in comments published on Tuesday.

He noted that Kurdish groups have been "tossed aside" by Washington after US President Donald Trump on Monday gave Turkey a green light to press ahead with its long-threatened offensive.

"The nation welcomes all its children and Damascus will solve all problems in Syria in a positive manner, away from violence," Mekdad said, vowing to take back all Syrian territory.

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