In the wake of decreased American support for Kurdish fighters, a Kurdish military leader told Reuters that his group may launch a joint operation with Iraq’s army.
Peshmerga forces training with U.S. 502nd Infantry Regiment Photo Credit: U.S. Army, photo by 1st Lt. Daniel Johnson
A leader of the Syrian Democratic Forces has stated that a joint operation with Iraqi forces was in the works and warned of a jihadist revival east of the country. The SDF is a largely Kurdish-based group in northern Syria who have been fighting ISIS as well as the Turkish forces that have recently been involved in the conflict.
In a phone interview with Reuters, Aldar Xelil, the co-chair of the Movement for a Democratic Society, claimed that Turkey’s initiative in the region has allowed ISIS to expand its presence and that the joint offensive will allow both militaries to target ISIS.
US President Donald Trump stated in a meeting yesterday that the United States will continue to be involved in Syria but wants an end to that involvement relatively soon. The lack of clear stability in northern Syria has left a vacuum for the rise of ISIS soldiers, according to Xelil, and the Kurds have repeatedly criticized Turkey’s actions in areas like Afrin. Kurdish forces have continued a guerrilla operation against Turkish troops in the north but are now refocusing their target on the rising ISIS presence in Syria.