White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said Turkish bombing of Kurdish-controlled areas in northeast Syria continues. The Turkish government says it is taking military action in response to a terrorist attack in Istanbul that it blames on Kurdish groups. The Kurds deny responsibility.
“They continue to conduct airstrikes,” Kirby said, adding there was no evidence yet of a threatened ground operation across the Turkish-Syrian border, where US troops deploy alongside the Kurdish-led SDF force.
Kirby said that while “Turkey does have a right to defend itself,” the operations carry a heavy risk. “We recognize their legitimate security concerns to defend themselves,” he said.
However, Turkish offensives against the SDF meant the Kurdish forces would typically be “less willing to continue to contributing to counter ISIS” on a day-to-day basis. “That is a concern,” he said.