Bolton Contradicts Trump On Syria Withdrawal

Bolton Contradicts Trump On Syria Withdrawal

Bolton Contradicts Trump On Syria Withdrawal

White House national security adviser John Bolton said Sunday that withdrawal from Syria would occur only after US forces eradicated the Islamic State and assured protection for USA allies.

President Donald Trump has now said that the United States would continue to fight the Islamic State militant group (ISIS) in Syria, after he previously insisted that it had already been defeated.

'We don't want the Assad's regime to consider our steps as a weakening of our disagreement with the use of weapons of mass destruction, while we are thinking about how the withdrawal will proceed and under what circumstances, ' Bolton claimed during his fly to Tel Aviv, Interfax reports.

Bolton also said all 2,000 U.S. forces may not be withdrawn, AFP reported. "I never said we're doing it that quickly".

The development shocked allies and U.S. defence officials alike, with Defence Secretary Jim Mattis and senior aide Brett McGurk resigning soon after.

Mr Bolton, who will travel to Turkey on Monday, said the U.S. would talk to Turkey to find out what its objectives and capabilities were.

"We don't think the Turks ought to undertake military action that's not fully coordinated with and agreed to by the United States", Bolton told reporters in Jerusalem on Sunday.

Those meetings will follow talks, also focusing on Syria, that Bolton is holding in Israel, where he said the US pullout was conditional on Turkish guarantees in regard to USA -backed Kurdish fighters. "But we are decimating ISIS", Mr Trump told reporters.

The U.S.is also seeking a "satisfactory disposition" for roughly 800 ISIL prisoners held by the U.S. -backed Syrian opposition, Bolton said, adding talks were ongoing with European and regional partners about the issue.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shakes hands with White House National Security Adviser John Bolton. He added that the meeting comes as Israel and the US are "deepening' their "intelligence and operative cooperation".

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All this over a mere 2000 troops, a number far too small to affect the outcome of the civil war in Syria?

"Russia, Iran, Syria and many others are not happy about the USA leaving... because they will have to fight ISIS... without us", Trump wrote. Turkey regards the Kurdish fighters we're allied with as separatists and terrorists.

"This picture, however, says more than a thousand words about decades of failed U.S. policies in our region".

Bolton's clarification follows a backlash from USA lawmakers and other nations that the Kurds' fate was left in doubt by Trump's surprise announcement last month that he would quickly withdraw.

President Donald Trump says USA troops will not completely withdraw from Syria until Islamic State militants there have been defeated.

Shahoz Hasan, the co-chair of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party, the largest and most powerful in northern Syria, told the AP that he would not comment until US officials conclude their meetings in Turkey.

"I think this is the reality setting in that you got to plan this out", said U.S. Sen.

After Trump announced his withdrawal plan, Turkey began to deploy military vehicles and troops close to a northwest Syrian town that it has long sought to capture, Bloomberg reports.

The holy site, which is also one of the country's major tourist attraction, is controversial and foreign officials generally avoid meeting in the area.

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