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Erdogan says he will discuss with Trump at UN the situation in Syria

UNITED STATES, WASHINGTON (OBSERVATORY) — Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday he expected to meet US President Donald Trump at the United Nations later this month to discuss military operations in northeastern Syria, where Turkey plans to resettle a million Syrian refugees.

Turkey and the United States are due to begin joint military patrols in the region on Sunday as part of an agreement to establish what Turkey says will become a “safe zone” along the border inside Syria.

Turkey, which hosts 3.6 million refugees from the Syrian conflict and already controls areas inside northwestern Syria, wants to extend its military presence to the northeast to push Syrian Kurdish military factions back away from the border and create a climate for the return of a large number of Syrians.

Speaking of his intention to meet Trump on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly, Erdogan said they would discuss “the steps we will take” on the Syrian border east of the Euphrates.

“There are differences between what has been said and what has already been done,” he said in a speech in the Turkish city of Eskişehir. We should solve it.”

He said Turkey would not accept US forces providing training to the YPG, Washington’s main ally on the ground, against the Islamic State in Syria, which Ankara classifies as a terrorist organization.

Erdogan reiterated a plan he first unveiled on Thursday to relocate a million refugees to northern Syria in a project he said would need international support to build new homes.

“We can carry out the construction. And you give us financial support. They say good words … but nothing. ”

Turkey has repeatedly complained about what it said was a lack of international support to help it host refugees, some of whom have been living in the country since the outbreak of the Syrian conflict eight years ago.

Erdogan says Turkey has spent $ 40 billion to support refugees. The EU, which signed an agreement with Ankara three years ago to provide aid in return for Turkish measures to stem the flow of migrants to Europe, says it has provided more than five billion euros in subsidies.

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