Erdogan says Turkey will never declare ceasefire in northern Syria


Residents of the northern city of Qamishli on Sunday celebrated the announcement of the Syrian troop deployment.

A senior USA defense official also told CNN that Trump's allegation looks wrong because Kurds are the people who defeated ISIS.

The measure underscores an overwhelming congressional consensus that Trump's decision has damaged US interests in the region and helped adversaries, including the Islamic State, Russia and Iran. But he suggested a planned November 13 trip to Washington was now uncertain due to calls within the U.S. Congress to sanction Turkey.

An identical bipartisan measure is being introduced in the Senate.

Erdogan said he told Trump in a phone call earlier this week that he should send a USA delegation to Ankara to discuss their demands and try to reach an agreement.

Turkeys president promised the United States leader that Turkish forces would not enter the Kurdish enclave of Kobani, located on the border with Turkish territory, said a US Senator.

"It is not possible for us to declare a ceasefire" until Turkey clears the "terror organisation" from its border, Erdogan said, referring to the Kurdish forces.

With Trump's critics saying that he handed over U.S. allies and stretches of Syria to Russian Federation, the United States tried to play down Moscow's role.

Speaking to a group of journalists, Erdogan said he told President Donald Trump: "We could never declare a ceasefire", adding that Turkey wouldn't negotiate with "terrorists".

Republican US Senator Lindsey Graham said he will introduce a bill on Thursday sanctioning Turkey for its offensive.

Trump announced new sanctions Monday to try to pressure Turkey. Undersecretary of Defense John Rood will head to Ankara from within the region to join national security adviser Robert O'Brien and Jim Jeffrey, the special representative for Syria engagement, for the talks. Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo are expecting to meet the following day with President Tayyip Erdogan.

Trump's comments came during a Rose Garden ceremony celebrating the Stanley Cup-winning St. Louis Blues.

Russian state media said on Wednesday Syrian government forces had occupied bases abandoned by USA troops.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan initiated conflict against Kurdish forces in Syria last week, causing global outrage and fears for world peace.

In the interim, Manbij has served as a de facto buffer zone between Syrian government troops to the south and Turkey-backed Sunni rebels to the north. Troops are consolidating their positions to prepare to fly out of the country soon.

Syrian Kurds on Sunday struck a deal with the government in Damascus on the deployment of Syrian army forces near the northern border after United States troops pulled out of the region ahead of a Turkish incursion.

The Trump administration intensified its damage control efforts over the ongoing Turkish assault against Kurds who once fought for and alongside the USA, announcing on Tuesday the imminent departure of a delegation to Ankara.

"It looks like Turkey's operation won't have any problems in Syria's Ayn al-Arab as Russian Federation also showed a positive approach", Erdogan said. After heavy criticism at home, Trump sought new leverage with Turkey by imposing the sanctions.

Since launching their assault on October 9, Turkish-backed forces have secured more than 100 kilometres (60 miles) of border, but Ras al-Ain - Siri Kani in Kurdish - has held out.

The Britain-based monitor reported "violent clashes" near the M4 highway - a key east-west artery that links the Kurdish heartland in the northeast with Syria's second city Aleppo and the Mediterranean coast beyond.