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A Turkish Air Force F-4 fighter jet flies over a minaret after it took off from Incirlik air base in Adana, Turkey, August 12, 2015.

© REUTERS/ Murad Sezer

Commenting on the situation in northern Syria, Ilnur Cevic, chief adviser to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, said that the situation had deteriorated to the point where he couldn’t rule out US troops operating alongside Kurdish forces being “accidentally” (i.e. deliberately) struck by Turkish missiles.

Speaking to Turkish media personality Ekran Tan on CRI FM, a local radio station, Cevic was asked to comment on the issue of US special forces units in northern Syria operating alongside the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party and its Turkish affiliate – the Kurdistan Workers’ Party. Ankara considers both groups to be terrorist organisations.

According to Turkish television channel OdaTV, Tan phrased his question to Cevic as follows: “What will you say to the US? They’ve served as a shield for the terrorists from the Kurdistan Worker’s Party. They’ve become a shield so that we cannot strike them.”

Cevic responded: “The fact that they went there doesn’t mean anything. If the PKK terrorists continue to operate in Turkey – and as you know, they are leaking in through northern Syria. They are infiltrating into our country through that region.”Continuing, the adviser rhetorically asked his host if he remembered what happened to the Daesh (ISIL/ISIS) terrorists following the Turkish incursion into northern Syria.

“What happened to Daesh? One night we suddenly went [into Daesh territory]; we ended up in El-Bab. The same applies to northern Syria. If our forces push far enough, and US armored vehicles are already there…You may see several missiles accidentally hitting them.”

Surprised by the answer, Tan said that the situation is very complicated, and that “you have expressed yourself in a very severe manner.”

Cevic didn’t retreat from his words: “If they act in this way, what would you do?”

On April 25, Turkish Air Force jets struck positions belonging to the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) — the armed wing of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party, and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, in northern Syria and Iraq, killing about 70 Kurdish fighters and causing anger and confusion around the world.YPG units are a key component of the majority-Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces, a US-backed force that has been closing in on Raqqa, the self-proclaimed capital of the Daesh terrorists. Washington and Moscow have each condemned the air strikes. Turkey however has insisted that the strikes were aimed at preventing the Kurdish ‘terrorists’ from sending fighters and weapons to Turkey.

U.S. military commander (R) walks with a commander (C) from the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) as they inspect the damage at YPG headquarters after it was hit by Turkish airstrikes in Mount Karachok near Malikiya, Syria April 25, 2017
© REUTERS/ RODI SAID
U.S. military commander (R) walks with a commander (C) from the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) as they inspect the damage at YPG headquarters after it was hit by Turkish airstrikes in Mount Karachok near Malikiya, Syria April 25, 2017