Bolton: We’re not withdrawing from Syria until Turkey guarantees YPG safety

President Donald Trump speaks during a cabinet meeting at the White House Wednesday Jan. 2 2019 in Washington

President Donald Trump speaks during a cabinet meeting at the White House Wednesday Jan. 2 2019 in Washington

This week Sen. Lindsey Graham explicitly mentioned the Iran objective along with fighting ISIS and protecting Kurds as reasons to keep US troops in Syria.

America's Kurdish allies in Syria, now fretting over when the Trump administration will pull out the 2,000 US troops who guarantee their safety, said Wednesday that they had apprehended an American teenager fighting with ISIS.

In a telephone conversation with Trump last month, Erdogan had asked why the U.S. president just didn't withdraw American troops entirely and let Turkey finish the job in Syria where, he added, Islamic State had been eradicated.

Air Force Col. Patrick Ryder, a spokesman for the Joint Staff, said the presence of US observation posts in Syria was not discussed during the meeting.

President Donald Trump´s "decision to withdraw our troops has been made".

Following a meeting with Kurdish officials in Erbil on Wednesday, he said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has committed to protecting Washington's Kurdish partners in Syria.

Pompeo cited examples such as the USA launching missile strikes in response to Assad chemically gassing his own people in 2017 and 2018; the US withdrawal from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal; and the reimposition of sanctions on the Islamic Republic.

Pompeo on Tuesday said, "There is enormous agreement on the risk that Iran poses to Jordan and other countries in the region".

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"It's time for old rivalries to end, for the sake of the greater good of the region", said Pompeo at a keynote address in Cairo. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

Erdogan's blunt words, made from a Justice and Development Party (AK Party) parliamentary group meeting at the Grand National Assembly in Turkey's capital, signal Ankara's growing unease in response to signs that the USA may be walking back on plans to withdraw its forces from northern Syria, as Trump announced last month. Mr Trump said the troops would be pulled out "slowly", while National Security Adviser John Bolton said the withdrawal would depend on certain conditions. "US security units are trying to dissuade their president", he added. "We have rejected false overtures from enemies".

Safadi also emphasised the position of Jordan and other USA allies in the Arab world that a pending American proposal for Israeli-Palestinian peace must recognise Palestinian statehood with East Jerusalem as the Palestinian capital. He also said he would look for guarantees for the safety of the Kurds after Turkey hinted that it would launch an attack against them.

The United States withdrew its troops from Iraq in 2011 eight years after an invasion to topple Saddam Hussein, but sent thousands back after Islamic State fighters swept into the north of the country in 2014.

Commenting on Tehran's actions, the USA official claimed that Middle Eastern states "will never enjoy security, achieve economic stability, or advance the dreams of its peoples if Iran's revolutionary regime persists on its current course".

The U.S. has never been "an empire-builder or an oppressor", Pompeo said, noting at one point that "when the mission is over, when the job is complete, America leaves".

Pompeo said that under Obama, the US abandoned its allies and was "timid" about asserting itself, that the U.S. For Trump and his minions to achieve more, they must provide some clarity of objective, especially consistency at the outset.

Many politicians from the ruling coalition of mainly Shi'ite parties called Trump's visit a violation of Iraqi sovereignty and demanded the United States withdraw troops.

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