As part of the joint US-Turkey deal to resolve the planned Turkish invasion of Manbij, US and Turkish military forces have carried out a coordinated series of patrols near the city. Officials emphasized that they were only near, but not in, Manbij.
Manbij was taken from ISIS by Kurdish forces in a US-backed invasion. Turkey has furiously opposed the Kurds staying in the city, demanding that they withdraw. President Erdogan says the Kurds have been steadily leaving the Manbij area since the US deal.
At present, local Manbij officials and their militias are in control of the city. These groups are conducting their own patrols inside the city, and in the area immediately surrounding it. According to Turkish FM Mevlut Cavusoglu, that area will be shrinking.
Though he didn’t offer specifics, he said the agreement with the US would see Turkish forces getting closer and closer to Manbij step-by-step, ultimately ending up with Turkish troops inside the city.
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