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US VP Pence : Turkey to halt military operation against Kurds in N. Syria, ceasefire will last for 120 hours

Turkey has agreed to temporarily halt its military operation against Syria’s Kurdish-led militias, allowing them to withdraw from the country’s border, US Vice President Mike Pence said during a visit to Ankara.

“Today the United States and Turkey have agreed to a ceasefire in Syria,” Pence said during a joint press conference with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

The ceasefire between the Turkish military backed by affiliated militants and the Kurdish-led fighters is set to last 120 hours, according to Pence. This time will be spent on the withdrawal of the Kurdish forces from the 20-mile strip along the Syrian border, where Turkey wants to set up a “safe zone.”

The agreed stoppage of hostilities has been described as a “temporary” one. When a “permanent” one comes in place, US President Trump will cancel the executive sanctions against Ankara, the VP explained.

The process of the Kurdish militias’ withdrawal will be “facilitated” by the US, Pence stated without elaborating.