Turkish ambassador to US returning to Washington

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    Turkey’s Ambassador to the U.S. Serdar Kilic, who was recalled in Ankara earlier this month for consultations, has left for the U.S. capital on Thursday, according to a diplomatic source.

    On May 14, Turkey recalled envoys in Washington as well as Tel Aviv for consultations after the U.S. moved its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem..

    The Turkish ambassador will be resuming his duties in Washington ahead of a meeting between Turkish Foreign Minister Cavusoglu and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on June 4, said the source, who asked not to be named due to restrictions on talking to the media.

    Since March 30, at least 118 Palestinians have been killed and thousands more injured by Israeli military gunfire in the east of the strip during mass demonstrations against the blockade and the U.S. decision to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

    On May 25, Turkish Foreign Ministry said that officials from Turkey and the U.S. have outlined a roadmap for cooperation on Manbij, northern Syria.

    “The Turkish-U.S. Working Group on Syria met today in Ankara to continue ongoing conversations regarding Syria and other issues of mutual interest and cooperation,” the statement said.

    “The two sides outlined the main contours of a Road Map for their further cooperation in ensuring security and stability in Manbij,” the statement added.

    The first meeting of the working group on Syria was held this March in Washington.

    U.S. military support for the terrorist group YPG/PKK in Manbij has strained ties between Ankara and Washington, and led to fears of military clashes between the two NATO allies, as there are roughly 2,000 U.S. troops in the city.

    This January, Turkey launched Operation Olive Branch in Afrin, northern Syria to clear terrorist groups from the area. After liberating the city of Afrin, Ankara said it might also extend its operation further east to Manbij, unless the YPG/PKK terrorist group leaves the strategically located city.

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