Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 23 November 2019

Why Turkey is invading northern Syria

Turkey launched a military operation against Kurdish fighters, just days after US troops pulled back from the area

Turkey launched a military operation against Kurdish fighters in northeast Syria on Wednesday just days after U.S. troops pulled back from the area, with air strikes and artillery hitting YPG militia positions around the border town of Ras al Ain.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, announcing the start of the action, said the aim was to eliminate what he called a "terror corridor" on Turkey's southern border.

But why is Turkey beginning this operation now? And what does this mean for the US role in Syria and the future of Syria's Kurds?

On this week's episode of Beyond the Headlines, we speak to Kareem Shaheen, a journalist who has covered the Syrian war since its early days and regular contributor to The National, and Michael Weiss, a columnist for The Daily Beast and co-author of ISIS: Inside the Army of Terror, about the implications of Erdogan's move.

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