President Trump: United States Must Ensure Assad, Iran and ISIS Cannot Exploit Withdrawal from Northern Syria

Trump Announces Deal with Erdogan Ahead of Turkish Troop Activity

October 7, 2019

Washington, DC — Today, Americans for a Free Syria (AFS) responded to the surprise decision by President Trump to withdraw U.S. troops from a buffer zone in northern Syria in the face of an announced incursion by Turkish forces.

“Decreased American engagement in northern Syria will lead to more conflict and instability, which will directly empower a resurgence of ISIS and advances by the brutal Assad regime and its Iranian-backed allies,” said Erica Hanichak, Government Relations Director at Americans for a Free Syria. “These outcomes are avoidable if President Trump works closely with his Syria team, led by the Secretary of State’s Representative for Syria Engagement Amb. James Jeffrey, to ensure Assad, Iran and ISIS do not benefit from the U.S. withdrawal, and to make certain that Turkish forces do not attack the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and spark further bloodshed.

“Ultimately, it was a failure by the previous administration to ignore Turkey’s security concerns that brought us to this moment of reckoning. Yet conditions in Syria have only gotten worse since President Trump started withdrawing U.S. troops in December. ISIS is likely on the verge of a breakout. The Trump Administration must exercise wise American leadership in these next few days. The stakes are very high and the consequences of failure would be catastrophic.”

Americans for a Free Syria (AFS) is a non-partisan, non-profit that advocates for human rights, the rule of law and U.S. national security interests in Syria.