BEIRUT — Turkey’s defense minister has described a U.S. decision to supply arms to Syrian Kurdish fighters as a “crisis” between the two NATO allies.
Fikri Isik also told private NTV television on Wednesday that Turkey has the power to defend its national interests in Syria, though he did not elaborate.
The United States announced on Tuesday that it would arm Syrian Kurdish fighters in a bid to recapture the Islamic State group’s stronghold of Raqqa in Syria, despite Turkey’s opposition. Ankara considers the Syrian Kurds as an extension of Kurdish rebels in Turkey that have led a three-decade long insurgency against the authorities.
Isik says it’s out of the question for Turkey to support any operation involving the Syrian Kurdish fighters.