Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has accused the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) of releasing captured militants of the Islamic State terrorist group (IS, banned in Russia) from prison amid the ongoing Turkish offensive in Syria.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses a meeting of provincial election officials at the headquarters of his ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party in Ankara on January 29, 2019. (Photo by Adem ALTAN / AFP) (Photo credit should read ADEM ALTAN/AFP/Getty Images)

Erdogan said this at a meeting of the parliamentary faction of Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party.

“The YPG uses the arrested IS terrorists as a bargaining chip in their negotiations, they began to release them from prisons,” he said.

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Turkey launched its offensive in northern Syria on Oct. 9 in a bid to create a “safe zone” along the border that would be free of Kurdish militias, whom it considers an extension of the Kurdistan Workers Party.

According to Kurdish forces, over 800 IS militants managed to escape the Ayn Issa camp in northern Syria on Sunday.

On Monday, a high-ranking Turkish source told Sputnik that the YPG had released IS terrorists from prison in Syria’s Tal Abyad before Turkish troops arrived there.


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