TURKEY

'Final target' of PKK/PYD is Turkey, Minister Canikli warns

FINAL TARGET OF PKK/PYD IS TURKEY, MINISTER CANIKLI WARNS

The U.S. weapons for the PKK/PYD terror group in Syria will be used to target Turkey once fight against Daesh ends, National Defense Minister Nurettin Canikli said Thursday.

In remarks made in Georgia's Batumi city, Canikli said: "The U.S. provided weapons that could arm nearly 40,000-50,000 men to fight Daesh.

"Our ally, our friend the U.S. is conducting joint efforts against Daesh in the region with the YPG terror group.

"The U.S. is doing this [for its fight against Daesh], but we know that the terror group's final target is Turkey. Once [the fight against] Daesh is done, which it is almost, all of those weapons will point at Turkey," the minister, who is attending a southeast Europe defense ministers' meeting in the country, said.

Turkey considers the PKK/PYD, sometimes referred to as the YPG, as a terrorist organization under the same umbrella as the PKK, which has waged a 33-year war against Turkey.

However, the U.S. sees the PKK/PYD as an ally in the fight against Daesh in Syria.

But Turkey, along with the U.S. and EU, considers the PKK -- of which the PYD is an offshoot -- a terrorist organization. Yet despite the PKK's terrorist activities, the U.S. has continued to support the PYD, the PKK's affiliate in Syria.

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