US President Donald Trump has commented on the situation in northern Syria, where they plan to create a safe zone in order to prevent new clashes between Turkish forces and US-backed militants from the SDF. He stressed that the US has destroyed the Daesh* terrorist group in the region, adding that his country shouldn’t have involved itself deeper in local conflicts.
According to the American president, the US military should fight only where it is in the country’s interest, “and only fight to win”.
The statement comes as Turkey prepares to clear Kurdish-led militants from Syrian territories east of the Euphrates. In the meantime, the SDF has called it “a stab in the back”, claiming that the US had assured the militants there would not be any Turkish offensive in the region. The Kurdish-led forces, however, stressed that they would fight against Turkey’s forces without any hesitation.
The US stated that it would not support the operation and evacuated two American observation posts in Ras al-Ain and Tell Abiad.
The two NATO allies have previously negotiated about the possibility of creating a safe zone in the northern part of Syria, but last month Turkey accused Washington of stalling the process and warned that it would establish a safe zone without US help if needed.
Addressing the decision, Damascus declared that both states are occupants, as their forces have been deployed in the country illegally, without any authorisation from the Syrian government of the UN Security Council.
Turkey has long been attempting to drive the SDF militants away from its border, as its government consider the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), leading the group, to be a part of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which Ankara has blacklisted as a terror organisation.