January 21, 2018 / 5:01 PM / 2 months ago

U.S. urges Turkey to 'exercise restraint' in Syria operation

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States on Sunday urged North Atlantic Treaty Organization ally Turkey to “exercise restraint” and limit its military operations in northwestern Syria, where Turkish forces are attacking a U.S.-backed Kurdish militia they aim to sweep from the border.

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson spoke by phone with his Turkish and Russian counterparts on Saturday to express concern about the situation, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement.

While supporting Ankara’s legitimate security concerns, “we urge Turkey to exercise restraint and ensure that its military operations remain limited in scope and duration and scrupulous to avoid civilian casualties,” Nauert said.

Reporting by Warren Strobel; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn

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