By Safvan Allahverdi
WASHINGTON (AA) - The U.S. State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert on Thursday called the YPG in Afrin, Syria "the PKK", which is a terror group that has waged a more than 30-year war against the Turkish state.
"Turkey has taken its eye off the ball ISIS [Daesh] and is going after the PKK this time," Nauert said in a press conference without a correction, referring to Turkey's military operation to remove the PYD/PKK terrorists from Afrin.
Describing Northwestern Syria as "pretty stable", she claimed that the Turkish military operation would cause a "new disruption" in the region.
"People now have to flee an area that was pretty stable," Nauert said. "Think about, all this country [Syria] has been through and now we are looking at a new disruption in Northwestern Syria."
Recalling the phone conversation that was held between President Donald Trump and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday, she added that Trump also urged Turkey to exercise caution and avoid "any actions" that might risk conflict between Turkish and American forces.
Turkey launched Operation Olive Branch on Saturday to remove PYD/PKK and Daesh terrorists from Afrin.
According to Turkish General Staff, the operation is to establish security and stability along the Turkish borders and the region as well as to protect Syrians from the oppression and cruelty of terrorists.
The U.S. has supported the PYD/PKK -- considered by Ankara as the Syrian offshoot of the PKK terror organization that has waged a more than 30-year war against the Turkish state. The terror campaign has resulted in tens of thousands of deaths.
American support for the terror group has long vexed Ankara as Washington views the PYD/PKK-led umbrella group SDF as a "reliable partner" in its fight against Daesh and continues to provide it with arms and equipment in the face of strong objections by Turkey.