US and Turkey launch operation to take entire border with Syria under control – Kerry

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Picture originally posted on Davidicke.com earlier this year

‘The US and Turkey intend to shut off Turkey’s border with Syria in a joint military operation, US Secretary of State John Kerry said.

The entire border of northern Syria – 75 percent of it has now been shut off. And we are entering an operation with the Turks to shut off the other remaining 98 kilometers,” Kerry said in an interview with CNN.

The northern part of Syria along the border with Turkey has long been contested between Kurd militias and fighters of the terrorist group Islamic State (IS). The US previously voiced its intention to train and arm a moderate Syrian force that would take control over the area and defend it from IS, preventing the smuggling of fighters, arms and other goods across the border.

Kerry mentioned the operation with Turkey as he described to CNN the mounting pressure on IS in both Syria and Iraq, but wouldn’t elaborate on what it amounted to and whether the US would send ground troops to take part in the operation. US President Barack Obama authorized the deployment of special forces against IS in an apparent deviation from an initial pledge not to have boots on the ground in the campaign.’

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