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Syrian army moves to confront Turkish forces as US withdraws

Syrian President Bashar Assad has begun deploying troops to the northeastern part of the country, opening up the possibility of a direct conflict with the Turkish forces that have moved into the region after US President Donald Trump ordered the withdrawal of US troops from the area last week.

While Turkey claims that the campaign aims to fight terrorism in the region and to create a “safe zone,” the main target seems to be the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a US ally that was instrumental in defeating Islamic State in Syria earlier this year. The SDF has now signed a deal with Assad’s regime to help fight the Turkish invasion. Experts have been warning that the US withdrawal is likely to play into the hands of major US adversaries including Assad, Russia, Iran and the Islamic State.

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