Tuesday, 23 April, 2019

USA planning to keep 1,000 troops in Syria despite Trump's withdrawal call

WSJ: US Military Plans to Keep 1000 Troops in Syria Donald Trump 'ready to leave nearly 1,000 troops in Syria'
Patty Aguilar | 19 March, 2019, 23:26

"Further, we continue to conduct detailed military planning with the Turkish General Staff to address Turkish security concerns along the Turkey-Syria border", he continued.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Washington plans to continue supporting Kurdish forces in Syria despite the threats from Ankara to launch a military operation against the Kurds in northern Syria.

Trump confirmed the next day that a small fraction of USA forces would remain in Syria with troops from other countries. He later scrapped his plan altogether and said the USA would keep 200 peacekeepers in Syria for a period of time, then upped it to 400.

The U.S.'s top general denied Sunday a report suggesting the military plans to keep roughly half of its 2,000 troops stationed in Syria following a withdrawal President Donald Trump described in December as immediate and complete. "Planning to date has been productive and we have an initial concept that will be refined in the coming days".

Declaring victory over the Islamic State, Trump last December announced the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria, leading to the resignation of then Secretary of Defence James Mattis.

Lawmakers in Congress and US officials, however, have maintained that ISIS hasn't been completely defeated.

Prosecutors offer to drop prostitution charges against Robert Kraft
In February, authorities announced that Kraft was videotaped twice paying for a sex act at an illicit massage parlor. Kraft was among hundreds of men charged for soliciting prostitution in Florida last month.

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In that crush people seem to have fallen, we are examining CCTV footage to see if the people who had fallen were the deceased. Lauren Bullock, 17, Morgan Barnard, 17, and 16-year-old Connor Currie were all killed in the crush.

The WSJ report came as US -backed forces fighting to recapture the last Islamic State group outpost in Syria admitted they were facing "difficulties" defeating the extremists, saying they were being slowed by mines, tunnels and concerns over harming women and children among the militants.

However, it was envisaged that the force would number no more than a few hundred troops.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said in February that the United States would leave a small peacekeeping group of about 200 personnel in Syria "for a period of time".

"The group still has leaders, still has fighters, still has facilitators and still has resources", he said.

The campaign has also been hindered by bad weather.

He said he was not aware of any smuggling tunnels still in operation, and that ISIS was cut off from the outside world.

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