Trump Seeking Arab Force in Syria to Take Over US Role: Report
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – The administration of US President Donald Trump plans to form an Arab force to replace US troops in Syria, a report said.
Trump's incoming hawkish national security adviser John Bolton recently called Abbas Kamel, Egypt’s acting intelligence chief, to see if Cairo would contribute to the effort, Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday citing US officials.
The initiative comes as the administration has asked Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates to contribute billions of dollars to help "restore" northern Syria. It wants Arab nations to send troops as well, the officials added.
Details about the initiative, which have not been previously disclosed, have emerged in the days since the US-led strikes on Syria.
Trump alluded to the push on Friday night, when he announced the missile strikes.
“We have asked our partners to take greater responsibility for securing their home region, including contributing larger amounts of money," Trump said.
A spokesman for the US National Security Council declined to comment about Bolton’s call to Kamel, who is widely regarded as one of the most powerful figures in the Egyptian regime.
The US, Britain and France launched airstrikes against multiple places in Syria early Saturday following Trump's order despite international warnings against further escalation of the situation in the Arab country and across the Middle East.
The US-led military coalition has accused the Syrian government of having allegedly attacked the militant-held town of Douma in the Eastern Ghouta region on April 7 and claimed that the Saturday air strikes had been aimed at deterring Syria's further use of chemical weapons.
The US-led military coalition has accused the Syrian government of having attacked the militant-held town of Douma in the Eastern Ghouta region on April 7 and claimed that the Saturday air strikes had been aimed at deterring Syria's further use of chemical weapons.
Syria has categorically denied the allegations of chemical weapons use, stressing that the country turned over its entire chemical stockpile under a deal negotiated by Russia and the United States back in 2013.