Turkey to attack Kurdish militias in Syria after U.S. pull-out

U.S. President Donald Trump’s National Security Adviser John Bolton concluded a two-day visit to Israel and Turkey, in apparent efforts by the U.S. Administration to facilitate a solid foundation ahead of an American military withdrawal from Syria. While in Israel,  Ambassador Bolton told Prime Minister Netanyahu that the U.S. withdrawal from Syria will be done “in a way that makes sure that the Islamic State is defeated, while it will also “take care of those who have fought with (the U.S. coalition) against the Islamic State,” namely the Kurdish militias in the north-eastern part of the war-torn-country. Trump’s top security adviser also revealed that Turkey must agree to protect Washington’s Kurdish allies, or else, the American military pull-out would be delayed further. This demand, however, infuriated Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who clearly emphasized to the United States that ‘no compromises’ will be made by Turkey vis-à-vis the Kurdish militias in Syria, which are viewed by Ankara as “terror organizations.” He said, “It is not possible for us to accept and stomach the message (U.S. National advisor John) Bolton gave from Israel.” / “Regarding this matter, Bolton has made a serious mistake and whoever thinks like this has also made a mistake. It is not possible for us to make compromises on this point. Those who are part of the terror corridor in Syria will receive the necessary lesson. There is no single difference between the PKK, YPG, PYD and Daesh.” While the United States lists the PKK as a terror organization, the YPG has been a key ally in the American military campaign against the Islamic State, an alliance that has long caused tension between Washington and Ankara. Turkey views the YPG as an extension of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party, PKK, which has waged a deadly three-decade insurgency in Turkey’s mainly Kurdish southeast. That is why, the Turkish President underscored in a speech to his AK faction, that Turkey will immediately move to eradicate the Kurdish militias the moment the United States withdraws. According to the Turkish President, “We had been stalled by the United States in Manbij for a long time and we are still being stalled but we have made a significant progress on this matter. Similarly, we have shown our resolve to the world regarding the terror structure in east of Euphrates.” / “In compliance with the agreement we reached with Mr. President (Donald Trump), we have largely completed our preparations for a military offensive against elements of Daesh who are still active in Syria. At the same time, we are determined to take steps against terrorist organizations such as PYD and YPG along with Daesh. We will mobilize to neutralize these terrorist organizations in Syrian lands very soon.”