By Levent Tok
The French army is present at five military bases in northern Syria in areas occupied by the YPG/PKK terrorist group.
Citing data from the French Ministry of the Armed Forces, French news agency AFP reported in 2016 that French special forces had been stationed in areas controlled by the YPG/PKK.
According to information obtained by Anadolu Agency from local sources, more than 70 French special forces under the international coalition against Daesh are stationed at the Lafarge Cement factory near the strategic Mistanur Hill and Harab-Isk village in southern Ayn al-Arab province (Kobani).
The French forces are working with YPG/PKK in field operations.
When the U.S. army built a military air base in Harab-Isk village, the nearby cement factory was incorporated. The base is controlled by U.S. troops operating under the coalition and French troops are also stationed there.
More than 30 French soldiers are also operating with the YPG/PKK terrorist organization in Raqqah, northern Syria.
Apart from French special forces who have been cooperating with the terrorist organization in the field, the 1st Marine Infantry Parachute Regiment and the 10th Parachute Commando forces operate in the region.
Although these forces appear to be stationed in Iraq, they cross into northern Syria through the Simelka gate at the Iraq-Syria border. Local sources noted that there has been increased activity over the past three days by these forces at the crossing.
French support of YPG/PKK draws reaction
The ringleaders of the SDF, which in reality is the Syrian branch of the PKK terrorist organization, met Thursday with French President Emmanuel Macron in Paris.
Based on their statements, several French media outlets reported that France promised to send troops to Syria’s northern Manbij region to support the SDF.
The French presidency had said earlier in a statement that Macron hopes “a dialogue could be established between the SDF and Turkey with help from France and the international community".
In response, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said: “If the remark [by the French presidency] that ‘we can be a mediator between Turkey and the SDF’ is true, it far exceeds the limit of the person who says that.”
French construction company Lafarge opened the cement factory in northern Syria in 2010.
It was revealed that since the second year of the Syrian civil war, the company had been bribing the Daesh terrorist organization for 16 months in order to continue its activities.
The U.S.-funded YPG/PKK seized the factory, which had previously been seized by Daesh, to use as its base.