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US support for YPG a temporary necessity, Mattis stresses

US SUPPORT FOR YPG A TEMPORARY NECESSITY, MATTIS STRESSES

James Mattis, The U.S. Secretary of Defense, told his Turkish counterpart Fikri Işık in a meeting in Brussels that their support for and cooperation with the PKK's Syrian affiliate the YPG militia was out of necessity and only temporary.

The U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis told his Turkish counterpart Fikri Işık in a meeting in Brussels on Wednesday that their support for and cooperation with the PKK's Syrian affiliate the People's Protection Units (YPG) militia was out of necessity and only temporary.

The defense ministers also discussed developments in Syria, Iraq and Qatar, sources said.

Turkey considers the PKK's Syrian offshoot the Democratic Union Party (PYD) and the YPG to be affiliates of the PKK, a proscribed terrorist organization according to the U.S., Turkey and the EU. The U.S. and the EU do not share Ankara's concerns regarding the YPG. Continuous U.S. support for the YPG has caused tensions in relations between Washington and Ankara while the former says that supporting the YPG is the only option to defeat Daesh and the latter says an alternative could be found with local Arab tribes, backed by countries in the region, rather than supporting and arming "a terrorist group."

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