Trump’s Syria withdrawal now comes with conditions, Bolton says
After weeks of uncertainty and contradicting statements about US President Donald Trump’s plans for the US to withdraw from Syria, his national security adviser is pumping the brakes — saying certain “conditions” must be met before the US brings troops home.
Iran Press/America: One of those conditions, John Bolton said, is that the government of Turkey guarantees the safety of the Kurdish fighters allied with the US who were integral to the anti-ISIS campaign over the last few years. There’s no timetable for when that may happen or when the US may begin withdrawing its ground forces from the region, Bolton said, but he reaffirmed that the US will leave northern Syria.
“There are objectives that we want to accomplish that condition the withdrawal,” Bolton told reporters in Jerusalem al-Quds on Sunday, according to Reuters.
Bolton’s comments, delivered during his tour of the Middle East this weekend, should have clarified the confusion that’s reigned since Donald Trump announced his bombshell decision last month to withdraw 2,000 ground troops from Syria — over Twitter, no less.
We have defeated ISIS in Syria, my only reason for being there during the Trump Presidency.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 19, 2018
Trump first said the withdrawal would be underway within a month. US State Department officials put the timeline at 60 to 100 days. Then Sen. Lindsey Graham, a close Trump ally on Capitol Hill, emerged from the White House last week indicating that the plan altogether was on hold.
The US deployed troops and equipment to Syria in 2014 as part of a Washington-led coalition supposedly fighting the ISIS terrorist Takfiri group.
The US government openly sought to topple Syria's government, which had supported popular resistance against Israel.
The Syrian Arab Army has increasingly liberated occupied territories from foreign-backed terrorist groups in recent years. 101/202