US Begins Troop Withdrawal From Syria

2018 shows a line of US military vehicles in Syria's northern city of Manbij

While speaking to reporters Friday, a spokesperson for Russia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said establishing dialogue is vital to maintaining peace.The spokesperson also urged the hand over its territory to Assad amid threats from Turkey of a possible attack on Kurds in the region.

Earlier, US military spokesman Colonel Sean Ryan had said the US had begun "the process of our deliberate withdrawal" from Syria.

Turkey announced the postponement of an attack last month when - even to the surprise of the Turkish president, according to the Associated Press - Erdogan convinced Trump to withdraw. On Thursday, Turkey's foreign minister said President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had already made the decision to launch an offensive against the Kurds in northern Syria, and that it would go ahead regardless of the presence of American forces. However, Ankara asked for more time and for postponing the start of joint patrols in Idlib due to its inability to provide security guarantees.

Over the intervening years the number of U.S. troops in Syria has increased, and a network of bases and airfields has been established in an arc across the north-eastern part of the country.

The reportedly beginning the process of withdrawing troops from Syria.

Relations between Tehran and Washington are highly fraught following the decision in May by President Donald Trump to pull the US out of a 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and six major powers and to reimpose sanctions.

United States troops have begun withdrawing from Syria, compounding weeks of confusion over Donald Trump's policy in the Middle East and raising fears over the fate of America's Kurdish allies.

His visit follows an address in Cairo on Thursday in which he pledged continuing USA support for stabilising the region and countering the threat posed by Iran and its role in Syria, Lebanon, Iraq and Yemen. Two weeks before Trump announced he was ordering a pullout, Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the US still had a long way to go in training local Syrian forces to stabilize areas ridden of the IS group.

Turkey, however, considers the YPG a terrorist group linked to a rebellion in Turkey.

"The damage is done", said Fabrice Balanche, a geographer and Syria expert.

"When the time and place comes, the terrorists here will also be buried in the ditches and trenches they have dug", he said.

United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivered a speech on Thursday in Cairo at the American University on America policy's in the Middle East, noting that the Trump administration hopes to establish a coalition consisting of GCC states, Egypt and Jordan.

American officials wanted to condition a U.S. troop withdrawal on a guarantee of safety for its Kurdish allies and a Turkish commitment to non-aggression, an idea President Erdogan hated so much, he refused to meet with NSA John Bolton who had flown all the way to Ankara to meet with him.

Pompeo said Trump considers the kingdom a "key ally" for the US and their partnership will keep going. American and Russian warplanes have shared the skies over Syria, carrying out separate- and in some cases, conflicting - missions against the IS group and other targets.

The US-backed, Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) said the move had "dangerous implications" for stability, would "negatively affect the campaign against terrorism" and create "a political and military vacuum". He has, however, asserted that the USA must bring an end to the Mideast wars that began after the September 11, 2001, terror attacks.



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