BEIRUT, LEBANON (2:30 P.M.) – The Turkish Foreign Ministry issued a statement on Sunday that blasted the U.S. State Department over their remarks about the Turkish military preventing civilians from returning to the Afrin region.
“At a press conference on May 3, the spokesperson for the U.S. Department of State influenced by the smear campaigns of the PYD/YPG terror group made an unfortunate statement regarding Operation Olive Branch based on unconfirmed conjectures. Above all, the one preventing the people of Afrin from returning is the PYD/YPG terror group themselves,” a Turkish Foreign Ministry stated.
A large number of civilians were forced to flee the Afrin region in northern Aleppo after the Turkish-backed rebels launched a massive offensive to expel the Kurdish-led YPG forces from this area.
Turkey maintains that refugees from Afrin are welcome to return to the region, despite the U.S. State Department’s recent remarks.