U.S. envoy: 'Ethnic cleansing' in Syrian 'cease-fire' zone

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s “Operation Spring Peace,” purporting to create a so-called “safe zone” completely free of Kurds, is responsible for war crimes and ethnic cleansing, charges a top U.S. diplomat.

William Roebuck, deputy U.S. envoy to the anti-ISIS coalition, wrote in an internal memo that “Turkey’s military operation in northern Syria, spearheaded by armed Islamist groups on its payroll, represents … what can only be described as war crimes and ethnic cleansing,” reported CBN News.

David Eubank, whose humanitarian relief team has been working since the current fighting began, told CBN “there has been constant fighting since the invasion” despite reports of Turkey agreeing to a cease-fire.

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“There’s never been a cease-fire, not one day. Airstrikes by drones, regular airstrikes, artillery, mortars, Turkish tanks. I mean shooting right at us,” said Eubank, founder of the Free Burma Rangers.

President Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. Special Forces troops from the area has created a vacuum, he said.

“Once we stepped back – whom? – here came the Turks and the Free Syrian Army, most of who were jihadis. And they fled, they ran for their lives, there were 300,000. Massive ethnic cleansing that now America is a part of. And it’s not completely genocide because no one’s hanging around to be killed, because they know they will be killed,” Eubank said.

He said Turkey’s proxy militia, the Free Syrian Army, is “a wicked force unleashing terror.”

“You know we’ve seen them mutilate girls, torture civilians, yell ‘Allah Akbar’ just like we saw ISIS do against us,” he said. “So, I would say they’re a wicked scourge being used by Erdogan to torment the people here. And they’ve got to be stopped.”

He confirmed Roebuck’s report that the Free Syrian Army is committing war crimes.

“Oh yes, killing prisoners, killing civilians, chasing people out of their homes, torture. Definitely,” Eubank said.

Eubank reported Friday in a video via Twitter that in the previous three days, 26 people in the area of Tel Tamir had been killed by drone strikes.

On Sunday, a member of Eubank’s FBR team in Syria, Zau Seng, was killed by a missile fired from a Free Syrian Army drone. An ethnic Kachin from Burma, Zau served as a medic and a cameraman.

See Eubank’s recounting of Zau Seng’s death and his tribute:

CBN reported five U.S. senators have written Secretary of State Mike Pompeo asking if reports that “Turkey and Turkish-backed forces are operating outside the agreed-upon ‘safe zone'” are true.

If so, they urge the administration to take immediate action against Turkey.

Dalton Thomas, founder and president of Frontier Alliance International, and FBR’s Dave Eubank give an update Nov. 8 from Tel Tamir in northeast Syria:

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