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We may be in process of leaving Syria, but in no way have we abandoned the Kurds: Trump

Syrian Kurds gather around US armoured vehicle Photograph:( AFP )

WION Web Team Washington Oct 08, 2019, 07.40 PM (IST)

As US troops began pulling out from northeast Syrian border, the US president in a series of tweets asserted that although US forces were in the process of leaving Syria "but in no way were the Kurds been abandoned".

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"We may be in the process of leaving Syria, but in no way have we abandoned the Kurds, who are special people and wonderful fighters," the US president said, adding, "likewise our relationship with Turkey, a NATO and trading partner, has been very good." 

"Turkey already has a large Kurdish population and fully understands that while we only had 50 soldiers remaining in that section of Syria, and they have been removed, any unforced or unnecessary fighting by Turkey will be devastating to their economy and to their very fragile currency," the US president said. 

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"We are helping the Kurds financially/weapons! Trump added.

The Kurdish forces, known as the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) had accused the US of reneging on an ally, warning it would have a "great negative" impact on the war against the Islamic State.

Trump on Sunday threatened that the US would "totally destroy and obliterate" Turkey's economy if it took any action he considered "off-limits" as the US troops withdraw from the region. However, in a conciliatory tone on Tuesday, Trump said Turkey is a big trading partner of the United States.

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"They make the structural steel frame for our F-35 Fighter jet. They have also been good to deal with, helping me to save many lives at Idlib Province," Trump said. In the tweet, the US president thanked Turkey for returning Pastor Brunson at his request while stating that, "Turkey is an important member in good standing of NATO."

The White House had said earlier that the Trump administration would not support or endorse any Turkish military action on the Kurds and it will also have to take responsibility for the Islamic State fighters currently imprisoned by the Kurdish forces. 
 

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The SDF had accused the US of reneging on an ally, warning it would have a "great negative" impact on the war against the Islamic State.