Turkey has agreed to train and equip a moderate opposition in Syria to help battle the self-declared Islamic State, the U.S. State Department says.
“There will be a planning team traveling to Ankara next week to continue planning that through military channels,” spokeswoman Marie Harf told reporters, describing a visit to Turkey by two senior U.S. officials.
The remarks come as France today expressed support Ankara’s call for a buffer zone between Syria and Turkey and the United Nations warned that hundreds of civilians trapped in the border town of Kobani face a possible massacre if ISIS militants succeed in their offensive aimed at capturing it.
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Friday: “We support the idea of a buffer zone,” although he said such a move would require “extremely close international coordination.”
Turkey’s request to establish a no-fly zone in the area has met with little enthusiasm by the U.S. and NATO.