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Syria conflict: Pompeo 'optimistic' on deal to protect Kurds

A convoy of armoured personnel carriers in Syria's northern city of Manbij. 30 Dec 2018Symbol copyright

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The USA has an estimated 2,000 troops in northern Syria

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says he’s constructive an settlement may also be reached with Turkey to give protection to Kurdish warring parties in Syria after the United States leaves.

He used to be talking within the United Arab Emirates following a telephone name together with his Turkish counterpart.

US forces in northern Syria have fought along a Kurdish defense force in opposition to Islamic State (IS) militants.

Turkey, alternatively, regards the Folks’s Coverage Gadgets (YPG) as a terrorist team and has vowed to overwhelm it.

Mr Pompeo is traveling the Heart East to take a look at to reassure allies following President Donald Trump’s abrupt announcement ultimate month that US forces would withdraw from Syria.

Speaking to newshounds in Abu Dhabi, Mr Pompeo stated the United States recognised “the Turkish folks’s proper and [Turkish President Recep Tayyip] Erdogan’s proper to protect their nation from terrorists”.

“We additionally know that the ones combating along us for all this time need to be safe as smartly,” he stated.

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Mike Pompeo used to be greeted by means of Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan all over his Heart East excursion

Mr Pompeo stated he had spoken to Turkish Overseas Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, including: “Many main points (are) nonetheless to be labored out however I am constructive that we will be able to reach a excellent end result.”

What has Turkey stated?

Final week, President Erdogan angrily rejected calls by means of US Nationwide Safety Adviser John Bolton for the Kurdish warring parties to be safe.

He stated such statements have been “unacceptable”.

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President Erdogan has threatened an army attack to defeat the YPG in northern Syria

Mr Erdogan advised MPs from his governing Justice and Construction Birthday party that the United States didn’t know who the more than a few Kurdish teams have been, including: “If the United States evaluates them as ‘Kurdish brothers’ then they’re in a significant myth.”

Mr Bolton used to be on a consult with to Ankara to hunt promises over the Kurdish warring parties, however President Erdogan declined to satisfy him.

Turkey considers the YPG an extension of the banned Kurdistan Staff’ Birthday party (PKK), which has fought for Kurdish autonomy in Turkey for 3 many years. The YPG denies any direct organisational hyperlinks to the PKK.

US seeks united entrance in opposition to Iran

Research by means of Barbara Plett Usher, BBC Information, Riyadh

This dispute with Turkey over The united states’s Kurdish allies has overshadowed Mr Pompeo’s sweeping Heart East travel.

Mr Pompeo actually needs to show the point of interest to countering Iran. He’s calling for a united Arab entrance in opposition to what he describes as its destabilising process and Saudi Arabia is essential to that.

However outrage over the Saudi homicide of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi has difficult the connection. A senior US respectable stated the American citizens sought after the Saudis to present a extra credible rationalization of what came about and do extra to punish the killers, and Mr Pompeo would press them on each issues.

Why is the United States chickening out from Syria?

In 2014, militants overran 100,000 squarekm (39,000 squaremiles) of Syria and neighbouring Iraq, and imposed their brutal rule on nearly eight million folks. Now, they keep watch over just one% of the territory they as soon as had.

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Media captionIs that this the Islamic State team’s ultimate stand in Syria?

Alternatively, the defeat of IS is a ways from ultimate. A US defence division document estimated in August that there may well be as many as 14,000 jihadists left in Syria and 17,000 in Iraq.

President Trump as a result surprised allies and confronted sturdy grievance at house ultimate month when he ordered US forces to straight away start chickening out from the roughly 30% of Syria managed by means of the YPG-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) alliance.

Mr Bolton later laid out a number of stipulations for the withdrawal, which advised that the four-month agenda agreed by means of Mr Trump may just slip.

He advised newshounds in Israel that it could be accomplished in some way that assured IS “is defeated and isn’t in a position to restore itself”, and that the United States would “deal with those that have fought with us in opposition to [IS] and different terrorist teams”.

What’s the United States presence in Syria?

About 2,000 US army body of workers are reported to be deployed in Syria.

Flooring troops first arrived in autumn 2015 when then-President Barack Obama despatched in a small collection of particular forces to coach and advise YPG warring parties.

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Media captionUsed to be Trump proper to mention IS is overwhelmed?

The USA did this after a number of makes an attempt at coaching and arming Syrian Arab rebellion teams to combat IS militants descended into chaos.

Over the intervening years the collection of US troops in Syria has greater, and a community of bases and airfields has been established in an arc around the north-eastern a part of the rustic.

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