Macron: Turkey's military campaign in Syria helping ISIS build caliphate

File photo of Macron, who has warned Turkey over its action in northern Syria
File photo of Macron, who has warned Turkey over its action in northern Syria Copyright Reuters
By Cristina Abellan MatamorosLuke Hurst
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The French president warned Turkey is putting millions of people at humanitarian risk with its military campaign against Kurdish forces in northern Syria.


Turkey will be responsible for helping so-called Islamic State to re-establish a Caliphate in Syria, French president Emmanuel Macron has warned, as he called on the country to stop its military offensive against Kurdish forces the north of the country.

The military campaign was launched on Wednesday, as Turkey tries to clear Kurdish YPG forces, which it views as a serious security risk, from its border.

Much of the international community has reacted with condemnation and fear that the ensuing chaos could play into the hands of IS, after the US pulled troops out of the region, apparently paving the way for the Turkish attack on Kurdish authorities.

Turkish warplanes and artillery pounded Kurdish targets on Wednesday afternoon, before Turkish troops and their Syrian rebel allies began a ground operation.

"Turkey is putting millions of people at humanitarian risk," Macron said at a news conference.

"In doing so, Turkey will be responsible in front of the international community for helping Daesh (so-called Islamic State) building a Caliphate."

More: Erdogan threatens Europe with opening border to 3.6m Syrian refugees

Euronews explains: Why is Turkey fighting Syria's Kurds and how is the US involved?

Macron also addressed the issue of Brexit, as the 31 October deadline for the UK to leave the EU creeps every closer, a deal seemingly not within reach.

Answering a question for Euronews, Macron said he was not the British prime minister or an MP, and that what is at stake is a British domestic crisis.

"The British parliament is not in a situation to vote for an agreement negotiated by the UK with the EU. At the very end this is a British responsibility," he said.

"If they don't want to make any move or make something which is not accepted, they will have to take the responsibility," he added.

Meanwhile, Macron says he doesn't understand why France's pick for the European Commission, Sylvie Goulard, was rejected by the European Parliament.

More: France's Sylvie Goulard rejected by members of European parliament

Goulard, who was France's choice to be the next head of European Union industrial policy, was the victim of a "political game", the French president's office said shortly after her rejection was announced on Thursday.

"I don't understand, I need to understand what happened," he said.

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