U.S President, Donald Trump has ordered the withdrawal of forces from northern Syria as the conflict between Turkey and the Kurdish forces escalates.
“We have American forces likely caught between two opposing advancing armies, and it’s a very untenable situation,” Defence Secretary Mark Esper said Sunday on CBS’s “Face the Nation.”
Esper said Trump made the order Saturday night for “a deliberate withdrawal of forces from northern Syria,” without providing a timeline.
“We did not want to get involved in a conflict that dates back nearly 200 years between the Turks and the Kurds and get involved in yet another war in the Middle East,” he added.
Esper stated that he does not know whether Turkey would fire deliberately on U.S forces.
“I don’t know whether they would or wouldn’t,” he said.
The defence chief added that the Kurds are looking to strike a deal with Russia to protect them from Turkey.
Esper said the U.S would withdraw less than 1,000 troops, in a separate interview on Fox News Sunday.
Turkey started its operation in northern Syria on Wednesday.
The country confirmed that it is targeting Islamic State extremists and Kurdish militia.