Fri, 05 Jun 2020

Washington D.C. [USA], Oct 23 (ANI): United States Senator Mitch McConnell and other top Republican lawmakers on Tuesday (local time) introduced a resolution in opposition to President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw troops from Syria, warning that his decision has benefited Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, the Islamic State, Russia, and Iran.

"If not arrested, withdrawing from Syria will invite more of the chaos that breeds terrorism and creates a vacuum our adversaries will certainly fill," McConnell was quoted as saying by CNN.

He said that if the President doesn't halt the withdrawal, Russia "will gain more leverage" in the Middle East, Iran-backed forces could gain greater access to a "strategic corridor that runs all the way from Tehran to the very doorstep of Israel" and the Assad regime will be invited to "reassert its oppressive control" over northeastern Syria.

He also urged Trump to rescind his invitation of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to the White House until a "more enduring cease-fire" is struck between Turkish and Kurdish forces.

However, McConnell refrained from divulging when the Senate would take up the resolution.

Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr said that Congress "didn't have an opportunity" to work out its disagreements with the administration before the president made his decision.

"Congress has a voice," said Burr, a Republican from North Carolina. "And now is the time ... to exercise it," the chairman added.

After Trump's announcement, Turkey advanced into Syria in order to force out Kurdish forces, it views as terrorists from parts northeastern Syria, where it would like to resettle around 2 million Syrian refugees.

Republicans and Democrats have strongly protested Trump's decision to remove troops from Syria and position many of them in western Iraq, voting 354-60 in the House on a separate resolution opposing the pullout.

But there are disagreements in Congress over how to try to pressure the administration and Turkey to reverse their moves.

Apart from strongly condemning the Turkish incursion in northern Syria, McConnell further urged the Congress to consider the repercussions of punishing a NATO ally in the same way the US punishes "rogue states." He cautioned his colleagues to evaluate whether the sanctions would also hurt US companies or its allies. (ANI)

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