Trump threatens Turkey with economic devastation if it hits Kurds

Trump threatens Turkey with economic devastation if it hits Kurds

President Donald Trump last month claimed the Islamic State group had been defeated and said U.S. troops would return home "now".

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan labeled Bolton's comments unacceptable and a "grave mistake".

The top US diplomat said he was "optimistic" that Kurds who fought alongside USA forces against the Islamic State group in Syria are not threatened by pledges from Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to launch military operations against what he terms Kurdish "terrorists".

Pompeo also sought to reassure Washington's Kurdish allies in the fight against IS, who fear the departure of American troops would allow Turkey to attack them.

"We have achieved the goal that we set out to achieve", he said. For years Trump has criticized USA deployment in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.

Turkey, however, remains firmly committed to removing what they call a Kurdish "terrorist" threat coming from the Euphrates River valley, and is actively preparing for a possible cross-border operation.

National Security Advisor John Bolton appeared to contradict the White House Sunday when he said the us withdrawal from Syria would not be immediate, but the Pentagon announced Thursday that without receiving any new direction, it's moving forward with the mission.

Erdogan refused to meet with Trump's National Security Advisor John Bolton, who was visiting Ankara.

More news: Ajith’s Viswasam Full Movie Also Leaked By Tamilrockers

No U.S. personnel have left Syria yet, according to a Pentagon spokesman. It says about 10 armored vehicles and other equipment arrived at a USA base in al-Rmelan, in al-Hasaka province.

Giving a subsequent speech about broader USA policy in the Middle East at the American University in Cairo, Pompeo said "now is the time" to bring America's forces out of Syria.

US troops are still working with a partner known as the Syrian Democratic Forces to stamp out the last IS holdouts in the Middle Euphrates River Valley near the Iraqi border. "We will be like second-class citizens at best, if we survive as Syriac Christians and Kurds".

"Many of the Kurdish statements were positive regarding their concern for the unity of Syria", Assistant Syrian Foreign Minister Ayman Sousan told a small group of journalists in Damascus. "That's fine, you all write what you like, but the President's been very clear, and Bolton and I have been very clear about this too, that the threat from radical Islamic terrorism is real", Pompeo said.

Speaking on January 8, Bolton appeared to backtrack on the White House's position saying there was no timetable for the United States' drawdown in Syria.

"Russia, Iran and Syria have been the biggest beneficiaries of the long term United States policy of destroying ISIS in Syria - natural enemies".

The U.S. has started "the process of our deliberate withdrawal from Syria", Col. Sean Ryan, a spokesman for the coalition fighting the Islamic State group, told the Associated Press without further elaboration.

Trump's decision to call back US troops in Syria, who were first deployed in 2015, was followed a day later by the resignation of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, who wrote a letter to the president saying he had the right to have a secretary of defense "whose views are better aligned with yours". Trump's decision drew intense criticism that the US was abandoning its local Kurdish allies and led to the resignation of Defense Secretary James Mattis and Brett McGurk, the special presidential envoy for the global coalition to counter ISIS. "They understand that there are squabbles in Washington, but their mission remains, their duties continue and they're executing them".

Related Articles