Russia warns against unilateral US border force plan in Syria

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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov says US plans to establish 30,000-strong new border security force led by YPG militants could jeopardise Syria’s territorial integrity.

Russia’s foreign minister on Monday slammed the US plan to form an army led by the YPG militants, warning that it could jeopardise Syria’s territorial integrity.

Speaking at his annual news conference in Moscow, Sergei Lavrov the US plan could cause problems for Turkey.

“The US’ unilateral, ultimatum-like project, aimed at establishing an army in Syria, may create problems in relations between Turkey and Kurds,” Lavrov said.

Lavrov also said the US move “can’t serve to calm the situation” in Syria’s Afrin district, which borders Turkey, adding that Russia expects Washington to explain its move.

On Sunday, the US-led international coalition against Daesh announced that it would establish a 30,000-strong new border security force with the SDF – the US-backed group, largely controlled and manned by the YPG, Turkey considers it as the Syrian wing of PKK terrorist organisation.

Turkey condemned the move, saying it was “wrong and objectionable” to co-operate with the “YPG terrorist organisation” on the ground in Syria in order to fight Daesh and stabilise the areas liberated from it.

“Moreover, Turkey, which is a member of the coalition, was not consulted on the establishment of the so-called ‘Syria Border Protection Force’,” said a Foreign Ministry statement.