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Turkey’s Erdogan says ‘first phase’ of Syria operation has concluded

The Turkish president also said the first phase of Turkey’s ongoing operations against outlawed Kurdish militants and dominant Syrian Kurdish groups was concluded.

ANKARA — Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday that his country concluded the first phase of its operations in northern Syria and northern Iraq, while insisting that Ankara will not forget Washington’s downing of its  drone during the operation last week. 

“As in every operation, we experienced the biggest problem with our ally," Erdogan said, referring to the US downing of the drone last Thursday in northern Syria. “There is no doubt that this incident has been noted in our national memory and the necessary action will be taken when the time comes,” Erdogan said without elaborating. 

He added that his country couldn’t prevent the “unpleasant” incident, reiterating Ankara’s previous warning to third countries to stay clear of Turkey’s targets. 

Turkey has been striking Kurdish militant bases in northern Iraq and US-allied Syrian Democratic Forces-held areas in northern Syria over the past week.

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