Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan spoke out against Kurdish militants while speaking in Konya on Monday, saying "we are burying the terrorists in the well they dug themselves, and we will continue to bury them."
"We spoke to Mr. Trump; those terrorists should go east of the Euphrates. If they won't go, then we will send them there, because they are bothering us. They are bothering us through the terror corridor. Whereas we are strategic partners with US, then we should do whatever is needed," said Erdogan.
On December 12, the Turkish leader announced that a new operation against US-backed Kurdish militants east of the Euphrates would be launched within the next few days.
The Kurdish militants operating east of the Euphrates have been long been a thorny issue between Turkey, a key NATO ally, and the United States, who backs the Kurdish fighters in Syria. The militants are seen by Turkey as an affiliate of the separatist Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, which is listed as a terrorist organisation by several states and organisations, including NATO.