US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Tuesday it was too early to know if an accord to end Turkey’s assault in Syria would succeed, ahead of a deadline for Kurdish fighters to leave border areas.
“Some progress has certainly been made,” Pompeo said at the Heritage Foundation in Washington hours before the 1900 GMT deadline for formerly US-allied Kurdish fighters to pull out.
But he added: “It is a complicated story, to be sure. The success of the outcome there is not yet fully determined.”
Turkey launched an assault against the Kurdish YPG militia after President Donald Trump told his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan in a telephone call that he would pull out US troops who had served as a buffer between the two sides.
Under heavy criticism, Trump slapped sanctions on Turkey and sent Pompeo and Vice President Mike Pence to Ankara, where they reached a deal Thursday under which the YPG would pull out of a “safe zone” within five days.
“We think now we are in a better place” than before the accord, Pompeo said.
Quoting Trump, Pompeo said that the United States needed to demonstrate “some tough love” to NATO ally Turkey.
Turkey has warned that it would resume its offensive if the Kurds do not withdraw within the deadline.
Turkey links the YPG to banned separatists at home, but the Kurdish fighters enjoy wide support in Washington for bearing the brunt of the battle to crush the extremist Islamic State movement.
© 2019 AFP
Trump praises ‘amazing warrior’ Sean Hannity for saying impeachment hearings are a ‘phony showtrial’
President Donald Trump thanked Fox News personality Sean Hannity for his over-the-top defense the evening before impeachment hearings begin.
According to Trump's quoting, Hannity said Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) was a, "corrupt, compromised, coward and congenital liar."
Hannity called the Schiff's Intelligence Committee hearings a "phony showtrial" -- despite the reality that an impeachment trial would occur in the GOP-controlled Senate.
Still, Hannity lashed out at the inquiry as "another fraudulent hoax conspiracy theory" and "witch hunt."
Trump thanked, "Sean the amazing warrior!"
Rudy Giuliani harshly mocked after admitting Trump’s guilt in new WSJ column
President Donald Trump's defense attorney took to the pages a Rupert Murdoch's newspaper to make "the case for the impeachment defense" on the eve of televised inquiry hearings.
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani lashed out enemies while clinging to conspiracy theories in his Wall Street Journal op-ed.
Giuliani began by attacking the press for reporting on Trump's solicitation of foreign election interference.
"If your only sources of news the past two months have been CNN and MSNBC, you probably think President Trump has committed some heinous act that is deserving of being drawn, quartered and carted out of the White House," Giuliani argued. "That’s a false narrative built on selectively leaked testimony from Rep. Adam Schiff’s closed-door Intelligence Committee hearings."
CNN’s Cuomo hammers GOP lobbyist for saying Trump can fire the inspector general
On Tuesday's edition of CNN's "Cuomo Prime Time," anchor Chris Cuomo pushed back on GOP lobbyist and American Conservative Union director Matt Schlapp for saying President Donald Trump has the right to fire Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson for transmitting the whistleblower complaint.
"Why would it be okay for the president to go after the inspector general for dealing with the whistleblower?" said Cuomo.
"Because he serves at the pleasure of the president. The president can get rid of them at any time," said Schlapp. "At the State Department during Obama's presidency, during the whole time Hillary was at the State Department, he didn't bother to pick an IG."