United States moved troops from northern Syria to 'ensure their safety', Pentagon says

Turkish-backed Syrian rebel fighters gather near the Syrian Turkish border as Ankara threatened an offensive against Kurdish militias it considers terrorists

Turkish-backed Syrian rebel fighters gather near the Syrian Turkish border as Ankara threatened an offensive against Kurdish militias it considers terrorists

Turkey plans to resettle 2 million Syrians in a 30-km-wide safe zone to be set up in Syria, stretching from the Euphrates River to the Iraqi border, including Manbij.

Trump took to Twitter to justify his decision to pull back USA troops from their positions on the Syrian border with Turkey, which potentially exposes Kurdish militias to an attack by the Turkish military.

We speak with retired US Brigadier General Mark Kimmit, who says PKK militants will likely wait for Turkish soldiers to settle in northern Syria before launching attacks on Turkish forces.

The current mandate expires on October 30.

Trump announced Erdogan's November 13th visit on Twitter on Tuesday.

US-backed Kurdish fighters in the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have been at the forefront of the fight against the Islamic State (IS) group in the war-torn country.

Amid a growing backlash against Donald Trump over the decision to withdraw troops from the area, the Department of Defense said on Tuesday that the move does not change its "force presence in Syria".

Trump sought to explain his position by stressing that Washington has an important relationship with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member and trading partner Turkey.

Iran expressed to Turkey on Monday its opposition to an incursion into northern Syria.

Trump said Turkey understands that "any unforced or unnecessary fighting by Turkey will be devastating to their economy and to their very fragile currency".

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It added, however, that the US presence in Syria was "illegitimate" and that its forces should have withdrawn from the country sooner.

Trump's announcement threw the military situation in Syria into fresh chaos and injected deeper uncertainty into the region.

Kurdish militias played a key role in fighting terrorist group Islamic State in northeastern Syria, with U.S. providing air support, weapons and training.

Trump also threatened to "totally destroy and obliterate the Economy of Turkey" if Ankara "does anything that I, in my great and unmatched wisdom, consider to be off limits [sic]".

"The homeland welcomes all its sons, and Damascus will solve all Syrian problems in a positive way, away from violence", Mekdad said in an interview with the pro-government daily Al-Watan.

He said Syria will defend all Syrian territory and will not accept any occupation.

The United States expects Turkey to take responsibility of captive fighters of the militant Islamic State group, a senior State Department official said on Monday, if Ankara's planned incursion into northeast Syria seizes areas where the detained militants are held. "They have been fighting with the PKK for many years", said Trump.

Zarif urged Turkey to respect Syria's integrity and sovereignty, the report said.

Iran, Turkey and Russian Federation have been working together as part of the so-called Astana group on the Syrian war, talks that have run parallel to United Nations efforts to find a solution to the conflict.

The Trump administration announced late Sunday that US forces in northeastern Syria would step aside for what it called an imminent Turkish invasion.

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