U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Turkish Defence Minister Fikri Isik (R) pose during a NATO defence ministers meeting at the Alliance's headquarters in Brussels, Belgium February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Virginia Mayo/Pool
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Turkey's defense minister said Thursday the new U.S. administration has a more flexible approach to Syria and is not insisting on the Kurdish YPG militia being involved in the operation to drive ISIS from its Raqqa stronghold.U.S. support for the Syrian Democratic Forces, an alliance dominated by the YPG, has caused tensions with NATO ally Turkey, which views the Kurdish militia as an extension of militants fighting on its own soil.Isik added that Turkey's priority after al-Bab would be advancing towards Manbij and Raqqa. He also said U.S. chief of staff Joseph Dunford would visit Turkey Friday.
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