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U.S. troops stay in southern Syria for indefinite period, - NBC

National Security Advisor of the United States John Bolton warned that Bashar al-Assad shouldn’t consider the U.S. troops withdrawal from Syria as a green light for using chemical weapons
10:50, 6 January 2019
Open source

The United States of America leaves some of the forces in southern Syria for an unknown period of time after withdrawal of the main troops, reports NBC with the reference to its sources in the Pentagon.   

It is also reported that part of the forces will be transferred to Iraq. 

On January 4, the U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo stated that the U.S. troops withdrawal from Syria has already started.  

Related: Trump evaluates withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan, - U.S. Vice President

At the same time, National Security Advisor of the United States John Bolton warned the authorities in Damascus that the U.S. troops withdrawal from Syria shouldn’t be considered as green light for using chemical weapons. 

‘We don’t want the Assad's regime to consider our steps as a weakening of our disagreement with the use of weapons of mass destruction, while we are thinking about how the withdrawal will proceed and under what circumstances,’ Bolton claimed during his visit to Tel Aviv, Interfax reports. 

Related: 10 Conflicts to Watch in 2019: U.S.-Chinese Tensions

It should be noted that the number of the U.S. military contingent in Afghanistan is 14,000. They train Afghan colleagues and take part in separate counterterrorist missions against terrorist groups, such as Islamic State and Taliban.  

On December 19, the U.S. President Donald Trump stated the U.S. forces are to leave Syria. He explained that the Islamic State was defeated and the U.S. completed its mission in Syria.    

On December 20, Trump claimed that the United States Secretary of Defense James N. Mattis is retiring in late February. In his letter of resignation, Mattis said that he left due to disagreements with Donald Trump, and also because of the withdrawal of the U.S. forces from Syria.   

Related: Ex-U.S. marine arrested in Russia for espionage appears to be British citizen

American officials claim that the withdrawal of more than 2,000 troops will take from 60 to 100 days. Most of the U.S. military bases in Syria are located in the north, in the areas controlled by Kurdish militia who actively cooperated with the United States in the fight against the Islamists.   

Turkey considers the Kurdish paramilitary forces in Syria their enemies and prepares an operation against them by bringing the military equipment to the border. Invasion of the Turks may start when America leaves.    

The United States of America started the military operation against the Islamic State in Iraq in June 2014, and in Syria in September 2014.

Related: U.S. to boost sanctions unless Iran ceases ballistic missile tests, - Pompeo

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