Thursday, 23 January, 2020

Pence, Pompeo to visit Turkey amid Turkish offensive in Syria

Donald Trump says Kurds 'didn't help us with Normandy' – video Turkey-Syria offensive continues | Live replay
Robin Buchanan | 17 October, 2019, 01:14

Trump's decision to withdraw United States troops from northern Syria after a phone call with Erdogan not only cleared the way for the Turkish incursion, but it also gives a free hand to Washington's adversaries in the world's deadliest ongoing war, namely Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his Russian and Iranian allies.

The SDF military agreement with Damascus and its ally Moscow marks an abrupt shift in policy following the United States announcement that its forces would be withdrawing from northeast Syria, where it had allied with Kurdish-led SDF forces to oust Islamic State.

Turkey's president said Wednesday that he will refuse to meet with U.S. National Security Advisor Robert O'Brien and his delegation when he arrives later in the day to discuss his country's invasion of Syria.

Those talks had taken place at Russia's Hmeimim air base in Syria among other places, he said.

Russian Federation has moved quickly to further entrench its leadership role in the region after President Donald Trump ordered the pullout of American forces in northeastern Syria.


Listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the USA, and the European Union, the PKK has been responsible for deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children and infants in its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey.

On Saturday, Germany and France announced they halted arms export to Turkey, citing Operation Peace Spring.

"There'll be ongoing conversations on what kind of capabilities we can help bring to them to continue the fight within Syria", the Pentagon official said.

"That has nothing to do with us", Mr. Trump said.

It said the two leaders emphasized "the need to prevent confrontations between units of the Turkish army and Syrian armed forces".


"We believe all parties should honestly abide by the principles of UN Charter and basic norms governing worldwide relations and seek political-diplomatic settlement of issues under the framework of global law", the spokesperson said. He vowed to press ahead with the incursion until Turkish troops reach 18-20 miles inside Syria to form a "safe zone" along the border area.

Putin raised concerns in the call about "terrorists attempting to break free and infiltrate neighboring countries" amid Ankara's offensive against the Kurdish-held areas of northern Syria.

He also defended his move to get US troops out as part of his wider effort to bring Americans home from "endless wars" despite being excoriated by members of his own Republican party.

Russian Federation said on Wednesday that Syrian and Turkish military forces should work out how to cooperate in northern Syria based on the Adana accord, a 1998 security pact, the state-run RIA news agency reported.

Earlier Wednesday, Erdogan said that the only option for Kurdish militants in Syria was to give up the battle and retreat. Our goal is clear.


The Kremlin said it would host President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for a meeting with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in the coming days, to ensure the operation does not turn into an all-out war between Turkey and Syria.

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