Ahead of a visit by US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to Ankara, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu on Monday warned Washington that Turkish relations with the US are close to breaking, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported.
“Ties with the US are at a very critical point. We will either fix these relations, or they will break completely,” Çavuşoğlu told reporters on the sidelines of a Turkish-African meeting in Istanbul.
“We want concrete steps [from the US]. The missing trust needs to be restored. The reason for that missing trust is the US,” he said, criticizing the US for supporting the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) in Syria.
The Turkish military and Free Syrian Army (FSA) fighters on Jan. 20 launched Operation Olive Branch in the Afrin region of Syria against the PYD, which Turkey sees as the Syrian extension of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
The Evrensel daily reported that 32 Turkish military members have been lost since the beginning of the operation.