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Is A Ceasefire Possible In Northern Syria?

People holding children disembark from a minibus transporting Syrians who have been recently turned into refugees by the Turkish military operation in northeastern Syria.
People holding children disembark from a minibus transporting Syrians who have been recently turned into refugees by the Turkish military operation in northeastern Syria.

Despite criticism from allies at home and abroad, President Donald Trump stood by his decision to withdraw American troops from northern Syria.

He doubled down on Thursday saying, “If Turkey goes into Syria, it is between Turkey and Syria.”

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“The PKK… is probably worse at terror and more of a terrorist threat in many ways than ISIS.”

“Russia hates ISIS as much as the United States does.”

“Syria hates ISIS.”

— Marshall Cohen (@MarshallCohen) October 16, 2019

He also weighed in on Kurdish forces in the region, saying, “They’re not angels.” Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo are now in Ankara, trying to negotiate a ceasefire..

But thus far, Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan has only said the Kurds should lay down their weapons.

We parse out what the president said and what as well as what this means for humanitarian efforts.

Produced by Gabrielle Healy.

An earlier version of this post said Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo were meeting in Istanbul. That’s inaccurate, they are meeting in the Turkish capital, Ankara. We regret the error.

GUESTS

Lara Seligman, Pentagon correspondent, Foreign Policy; @laraseligman

For more, visit https://the1a.org.

© 2019 WAMU 88.5 – American University Radio.

Copyright 2020 WAMU 88.5. To see more, visit WAMU 88.5.