Talks with US on Syria zone ‘positive’

Turkey's defense minister says his country would like to establish a so-called "safe zone" in northeast Syria jointly with the United States but will act alone if necessary.

Hulusi Akar made the comments on Wednesday as Turkish and U.S. military officials continued to hold talks in Ankara over the zone.

He said the talks were progressing in a "positive" manner, adding that the American officials' views were "moving closer" to Turkey's.

Ankara wants to control — in coordination with the U.S. — a 19-25 mile-deep zone east of the Euphrates River in Syria, and wants no Syrian Kurdish forces there. Turkey sees the Syrian Kurdish fighters as terrorists aligned with a Kurdish insurgency within Turkey.