Turkey-Syria border: Kurds bitter as US troops withdraw

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أخر تحديث : lundi 7 octobre 2019 - 4:41
Turkey-Syria border: Kurds bitter as US troops withdraw

US troops have begun withdrawing from positions in northern Syria, paving the way for a Turkish operation against Kurdish fighters in the border area

Kurdish-led forces have until now been a key US ally in Syria, where they helped defeat the Islamic State group, but Turkey regards them as terrorists

The main Kurdish-led group called the surprise US move a stab in the back

But President Donald Trump defended the pullout, saying it was time to get out of these ridiculous Endless Wars

The withdrawal represents a significant shift in US foreign policy and goes against the advice of senior officials in the Pentagon and state department. It follows a White House statement issued late on Sunday, saying US troops were stepping aside for an imminent Turkish operation

US military vehicles were filmed moving away from the border

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey’s aim was to combat Kurdish fighters in the border area and to set up a « safe zone » for Syrian refugees currently living in Turkey

On Monday, US Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, a close ally of the president, called the announcement a « disaster in the making », saying he would introduce a Senate resolution opposing the decision and calling for it to be reversed

? What did the White House say

Turkey will soon be moving forward with its long-planned operation into northern Syria, the statement said

The United States Armed Forces will not support or be involved in the operation, and United States forces, having defeated the Isis territorial ‘Caliphate’, will no longer be in the immediate area

In a series on tweets on Monday defending the decision, President Trump said the US « got deeper into battle with no aim in sight » and that Turkey, Europe, Syria, Iran, Iraq, Russia and the Kurds will now have to figure the situation out

The White House also said Turkey would take over all responsibility for IS fighters captured by Kurdish forces over the past two years

More than 12,000 men are in detention on suspicion of being IS members in Kurdish-controlled camps located south of Turkey’s planned « safe zone ». At least 4,000 of them are foreign nationals

US allies betrayed

This decision risks a recasting of alliances in Syria. The Kurds may be forced to seek an accommodation with the Syrian government. The potential chaos could facilitate a resurgence of IS. Indeed, the US pullback of its forces from the border area may herald the full withdrawal of troops from Syria that Mr Trump has long wanted

It marks a betrayal of Washington’s Kurdish allies, a betrayal that many other countries in the region will note with alarm

Both the Saudis and the Israelis are coming to realise that Mr Trump’s robust rhetoric is rarely matched by actions

Last month the Syria Study Group, a bipartisan body commissioned by Congress, stated in its final report that the US still has significant security interests in Syria and retains some policy levers with which to influence events there. But that is clearly not Present Trump’s view

Free Opinions News – bbc.com

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