Turkey’s Kurdish party sees US withdrawal from Syria merely as ‘tactical move’

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AFP PHOTO / OZAN KOSE

Pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Co-chair Sezai Temelli on Thursday said the announcement of the withdrawal of US troops from northern Syria could be considered merely a “tactical move” because Washington had issued similar statements in the past, the Artı Gerçek news website reported.

“I hope the US decision to withdraw from Syria inspires other foreign forces,” Temelli said during a visit to the HDP’s Diyarbakır office, referring to Russia and Turkey.

US President Donald Trump announced the decision via Twitter on Wednesday saying, “We have defeated ISIS in Syria, my only reason for being there during the Trump Presidency.”

In the fight against ISIS, another name for the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), the US has backed the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which was spearheaded by the People’s Protection Units (YPG), Kurdish militia in northern Syria.

According to experts the US withdrawal will affect Kurds in the region most as Turkey has been looking for the possibility to take over Kurdish-controlled areas in northern Syria.

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the SDF command views Washington’s decision as a “stab in the back” and a “betrayal” of the thousands of Kurdish fighters who have lost their lives in battles against the militant group, The National news website reported on Wednesday.

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