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Merkel, Macron Urge Turkey to Immediately End Offensive in Northern Syria

The operation threatens to drive large parts of the population from their homes, Merkel said, noting that it would also risk 'destabilisation of the region and lead to a resurgence of the IS'.

Karan Anand | AFP

Updated:October 13, 2019, 11:37 PM IST
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Merkel, Macron Urge Turkey to Immediately End Offensive in Northern Syria
Turkey-backed Syrian rebel fighters walk together in the border town of Akcakale in Sanliurfa province, Turkey. (Image: Reuters)

Paris: France's President Emmanuel Macron on Sunday called for end to Turkey's offensive against Kurds in northern Syria, saying the operation risked creating an "unbearable humanitarian situation".

"Our common wish is that the offensive must cease," he said at a joint news conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Merkel also urged President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Sunday to halt Turkey's offensive in northern Syria immediately, warning it could spark further destabilisation of the region and a resurgence of the IS jihadist group.

In an earlier phone call with Erdogan, Merkel "spoke in favour for an immediate end to the military operation", the chancellor's office said in a statement.

The operation threatens to drive large parts of the population from their homes, she said, noting that it would also risk "destabilisation of the region and lead to a resurgence of the IS".

Germany and France on Saturday said they were suspending arms exports to Turkey over its offensive in Syria against the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG).

Turkey sees the YPG as a terrorist off-shoot of Kurdish rebels in its own territory, but Western powers used the Kurds as the main ground force against the Islamic State group in Syria.

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