Zarif Calls U.S. An Unreliable Ally And an 'Occupier' In Syria

Marco Green
October 9, 2019

"Despite continued misreporting to the contrary, Secretary Esper and Chairman Milley were consulted over the last several days by the President regarding the situation and efforts to protect United States forces in northern Syria in the face of military action by Turkey", the Defense Department's chief spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said in a statement.

The current mandate expires on October 30.

The withdrawal of United States troops from northeastern Syria does not amount to abandoning the Kurds, Donald Trump said in the wake of criticism at home.

Trump stressed that Washington has an important relationship with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member and trading partner Turkey.

Trump's announcement has received broad criticism from both Republicans and Democrats in Congress.

In a letter addressed to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer, the senators said Trump's decision to pull back troops will severely harm U.S. strategic interests and reduce its influence in the region while strengthening Turkey, Russia, and Iran.

Trump also says Turkey is a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member in "good standing".

"We are very closely watching the situation", he said.

French Prime Minister Edouard Phillippe said Tuesday that his country's forces would remain in Syria to battle ISIS and defend Kurdish-led forces fighting the terror group.

Faisal Mekdad urges the Syrian Kurds to return to the government rather than "plunge into the abyss" - a reference to the expected Turkish incursion.

Joining other Republicans in Congress, both of Alaska's senators are criticizing President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw US troops from Syria's northern border with Turkey.

"The nation welcomes all its children and Damascus will solve all problems in Syria in a positive manner, away from violence", Mekdad said, vowing to take back all Syrian territory.

"As I have stated strongly before, and just to reiterate, if Turkey does anything that I, in my great and unmatched wisdom, consider to be off limits, I will totally destroy and obliterate the Economy of Turkey (I've done before!)" Trump tweeted. He claims Turkey faces devastation if there is "unnecessary fighting" against them.

Turkey's vice president Fuat Oktay says his country won't bow to threats in an apparent response to U.S. President Donald Trump's warning to Ankara about the scope of its planned military incursion into Syria. American and Turkish soldiers had been conducting joint patrols in a zone along the border, while Kurdish fighters dismantled fortifications amid assurances that Turkey would not invade.

As controversy continues over a planned Turkish incursion into Syria, Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif called the U.S.

"Zarif, opposed military action and emphasized respect for Syria's territorial integrity and national sovereignty and the need to fight terrorism and bring stability and security to Syria", state broadcaster IRIB said, about the phone call with Mevlut Cavusoglu.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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