Talks after US fighter jet shoots down armed Turkish drone in Syria

The top US and Turkish diplomats have spoken by phone after US forces in Syria shot down an armed Turkish drone. Washington said the drone came too close to its ground forces in Syria, but Ankara merely said it was lost during operations.

During the call between the Nato allies, Hakan Fidan told the US Turkey would keep targeting Kurdish groups. The US works with Kurdish YPG forces in Syria, but Turkey views them as separatists and terrorists.

Mr Fidan told US Secretary of State Antony Blinken that Turkey’s “counter-terrorism operations in Iraq and Syria will continue with determination”.

Meanwhile a US State Department spokesperson said Mr Blinken highlighted the need for Washington and Ankara to “coordinate and deconflict” their activities.

On Thursday US military officials said a US F-16 fighter jet shot down the armed Turkish drone which was operating near American troops in Syria after giving several warnings.

Pentagon spokesperson Brig Gen Patrick Ryder told reporters that American forces had observed several drones carrying out airstrikes near Al Hasakah in north-eastern Syria.

Some of the strikes were approximately 1km away from US troops, prompting them to take shelter in bunkers, Ryder said.



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