Washington: President Trump issued a stern warning to Turkey saying, ‘Although the United States is withdrawing its military from Syria, we have not deserted the Kurdish people. If Turkey does anything off-limits and attacks the Kurds, the Turkish economy will have to face dire consequences for the action. The United States will continue to provide financial and military aid to the Kurds.’
The US leaders criticised the decision saying President Trump had given Turkey a blanket permit to attack the Kurds by withdrawing the US military from Syria. Nikki Haley, the former US Ambassador to the United Nations (UN), reminded all that the Kurds had assisted the United States, in the campaign against the ISIS in Syria and Iraq. Furthermore, Senator Lindsay Graham and Marco Rubio termed the decision to be inappropriate.
However, within hours of the military withdrawal, President Trump issued a stern warning to Turkey. President Trump reprimanded Turkey stating that the US would not tolerate its unrestrained action. He added that ‘It cannot be ignored that Turkey is an ally of the United States in NATO. Nevertheless, even the Kurds are associates of the United States, and we will not desert them.’
‘If Turkey goes off-limits and attacks the Kurds, I will obliterate the Turkish economy. I will have to adopt an unprecedented stern stand against the nation,’ President Trump warned. “The Kurdish rebel group ‘YPG’ is connected to the Kurdish group ‘PKK’, based in Turkey. Turkey has declared the PKK (Kurdistan Workers Party) a terrorist organisation and included the YPG in the list of terrorist outfits as well. Therefore, Turkish President Erdogan has claimed that Turkey had the right to act against the Kurds, which were responsible for the instability in the state. Also, the Turkish Defence Ministry has said that its military, will not differentiate between ISIS and the Kurds when it invades Syria.
Turkey has undertaken the operation in Syria to eliminate the Kurdish resistance, which claims its right over swathes of Turkish land. Nevertheless, it would be difficult for Turkey to execute any operation against the Kurds after President Trump’s warning which asserts the US would not tolerate any action against the group. Moreover, after infiltrating into Syria with a massive number of ground forces and military equipment, it may become difficult for Turkey to turn back.