Trump abandons US-backed Syria Kurdish militants, says 'too costly' to back them
Iran Press TV
Mon Oct 7, 2019 03:18PM
US President Donald Trump, doubling down on his decision to pull out American troops from northern Syria, has withdrawn Washington's "costly" support from long-time Kurdish allies purportedly fighting Takfiri Daesh terrorists in the region.
Trump defended his administration's decision in a series of tweets on Monday and said it was time to remove the United States from "ridiculous endless wars" after the White House announced that American forces would be pulled from northern Syria amid an impending Turkish military operation there.
"The Kurds fought with us, but were paid massive amounts of money and equipment to do so. They have been fighting Turkey for decades. I held off this fight for almost 3 years, but it is time for us to get out of these ridiculous Endless Wars, many of them tribal, and bring our soldiers home," Trump tweeted, adding, "WE WILL FIGHT WHERE IT IS TO OUR BENEFIT, AND ONLY FIGHT TO WIN."
Trump once again claimed that "100%" of Daesh has been defeated since he took office.
"The United States was supposed to be in Syria for 30 days, that was many years ago. We stayed and got deeper and deeper into battle with no aim in sight. When I arrived in Washington, ISIS was running rampant in the area. We quickly defeated 100% of the ISIS Caliphate," he said, using an acronym for the Takfiri terrorist outfit.
Noting that after withdrawal of the US forces from Syria's north other parties involved in the country's years-long conflict must now decide on which course of action to take, Trump said in another tweet, "Turkey, Europe, Syria, Iran, Iraq, Russia and the Kurds will now have to figure the situation out."
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has for long threatened that his country's military is ready to launch an operation against US-backed Kurdish militants in Syria at any moment.
On Monday, Erdogan spoke of imminent army preparations against Kurdish militants in Syria, saying, "We can come any night without warning. It is absolutely out of the question for us to further tolerate the threats from these terrorist groups."
After a phone conversation between Trump and Erdogan, the White House said Ankara would "soon be moving forward with its long-planned operation into Northern Syria," and that US forces would "no longer be in the immediate area."
The US has long been providing the militants of the so-called People's Protection Units (YPG) with arms, calling them a key partner in the purported fight against Daesh. Many observers, however, see the support as part Washington's plans to carve out a foothold in the Arab country.
That support has also angered Washington's NATO ally Turkey, which views the YPG as a terrorist organization tied to the homegrown Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). The PKK has been waging a war inside Turkey for decades.
Turkey said it was ready to carry out an air and ground operation to push back YPG militants from border areas after a deadline to jointly establish a so-called safe zone with the US passed.
On August 7, Turkey and the US reached an agreement on the establishment of a joint operation center in northern Syria after Ankara threatened to launch an operation against YPG militants and push them away from the Turkish border.
Turkey seeks to establish a 32-kilometer "safe zone" in northern Syria, and has stressed that it wants the YPG cleared from the region.
Neither Turkey nor the US has authorization from the Syrian government for their activities in Syria.
The Syrian government has slammed the agreement, condemning it as a violation of Syria's sovereignty and territorial integrity as well as international law.
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