Turkey agreed Thursday to a 120-hour cease-fire in its assault on Kurdish fighters in northern Syria, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence announced in Ankara, after extensive talks with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Pence said the pause in Turkey's weeklong offensive would give Kurdish YPG fighters a window to leave the 32-kilometer-wide buffer zone just south of the Turkish border with Syria. He said the halt in hostilities was aimed at ensuring "peace and security is the order of the day" in the volatile region, and it came after five hours of discussions between Turkish and U.S. officials.
But local Kurdish news outlets reported that a longtime Syrian Kurdish politician, Aldar Xelil, who often speaks for Syrian Kurds, said, "We've previously stated that the proposal of Turkey's entering a depth of 30 km inside Syrian territories is rejected." He said Kurds would defend themselves if attacked during the cease-fire.
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