Pompeo confident of good outcome for Turkey and Kurds

Turkish US foreign ministers discuss Syria on phone

He also acknowledged some things still need to be worked out between Turkey and Kurdish forces, but remains confident of a positive outcome.

A USA defense official told Fox News on Friday that the US -led military coalition in Syria started the process of removing troops from the region, but wouldn't confirm further details for security purposes.

Turkey had rejected any suggestions that U.S. President Donald Trump's plan to withdraw troops was conditional on the safety of the U.S. -backed Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG).

The US withdrawal has begun with shipments of military equipment, according to US defence officials.

The president defended his decision to withdraw troops, saying any remaining IS fighters could be attacked from an unspecified "existing nearby base".

Last December, Trump announced plans to withdraw all USA troops from Syria, claiming that American forces had defeated Daesh there.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner. But Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has vowed to crush the Kurdish groups that have been effective in defeating Islamic State in Syria.

Senior US officials were shocked too, among them Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, who quit in protest. National Security Advisor John Bolton even said that U.S. forces will not leave Syria until Turkey guarantees the safety of the US-backed Kurdish militias.

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Turkey has recently warned that it would launch combat operations across its southern border into northeastern Syria against Kurdish forces who have been allied with the U.S.in the fight against ISIS. "The bulk of recent attacks show how we are more committed than ever to act against Iran in Syria, as we promised". "We also benefit but it is now time to bring our troops back home".

On Saturday, more than 600 people were evacuated from the remaining Isis holdout in eastern Syria, a monitor said, as US-backed fighters prepared for a final assault on the area.

Ankara sees the backbone of that alliance, the YPG, as a terrorist group linked to the Kurdistan Worker's Party (PKK), which has fought a decades-long insurgency against the Turkish state.

On Friday, the USA -led coalition said it had started the pullout, but officials later said only equipment, not troops, were going.

Pompeo's remarks follow tensions between the U.S. and Turkey over the fate of Washington's allies in the fight against ISIS.

Syria has been in a state of civil war since 2011, with government forces fighting opposition groups and terrorist organizations.

Sousan said intensified dialog was important when set against challenges, "especially the expansionist ambitions that lead the policies of the Turkish regime".

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