Turkey, US military forces begin first phase of north Syria agreement

A recent military-diplomatic agreement reached between Turkey and the US for the establishment of a joint-patrol zone in Kurdish YPG-held areas of northern Syria has gone into effect according to reports from Turkish media.

Sources have disseminated information that the first US forces attache – a total of 90 service personnel – who are tasked with planning operations alongside Turkey arrived in the city of Sanliurfa after which they escorted to a Turkish Armed Forces operations center at Akçakale.

This represents the first phase of Turkish-US northern Syria agreement. Sources report that the first order of the day will be to plan whose forces patrol what areas and agreed on routes of movement along the border.

On Monday, the Turkish Army officially announced the joint-operations center (Turkish border city near the Syrian city of Tal Abyad) would begin conducting missions in “the coming days”.

The operational details of the agreement reached between Turkey and the US remain unknown. Initial Turkish demands were for a Turkish-controlled buffer zone extending 30 kilometers into northern Syria east of the Euphrates River, whilst the American negotiators insisted on a 5 kilometer deep buffer zone only.