Turkey and the US have agreed to establish a joint operation centre to manage tensions between US-backed Kurdish militia and Turkish forces in northern Syria.
The announcement from the Turkish government came after three days of tense negotiations with US officials hoping to forestall a Turkish attack on the Kurdish YPG group, which controls large swathes of northern Syria.
Turkey sees the YPG as a terrorist offshoot of the Kurdish PKK, which has fought a bloody insurgency inside its territory for the past 35 years.
The defence ministry said in a statement that Ankara had agreed with US officials to “implement without delay” the first measures aimed at eliminating Turkey’s concerns.
“In that framework, to quickly create in Turkey a joint operation centre to coordinate and manage the implementation of the safe zone with the US.”
Ankara has stepped up threats in recent days to launch an offensive against the YPG.
That put the United States in a difficult position as a Nato ally of Turkey but also a supporter of the YPG as its main frontline partner against the Islamic State.
Both sides agree that a buffer zone is needed to keep the YPG away from Turkey’s borders, but they have diverged on how large it should be, or who should control it.
The defence ministry said Turkey’s ultimate aim was to create a “peace corridor” that can “ensure that our Syrian brothers will be able to return to their country”.