News analysis

Widespread alarm as Trump leaves Kurdish allies to Turkish forces

The Donald Trump administration is trying to counter a wave of concern in security and diplomatic circles, as well as among both Republicans and Democrats, that the US President, in a phone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, essentially left Kurdish forces at the mercy of the Turks.

A senior administration official told journalists that the announcement late on Sunday by the White House did not constitute a full US withdrawal from Syria, and that only 50 to 100 US special forces soldiers were moving to other locations from the zone in northern Syria that will be targeted by Turkish forces.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 09, 2019, with the headline 'Widespread alarm as Trump leaves Kurdish allies to Turkish forces'. Print Edition | Subscribe