Turkey deploys tank convoy to Syrian border
Date: 2019-10-09 08:46
Turkey deployed a convoy of trucks carrying tanks towards the Syrian border on Tuesday (October 8) after finalising preparations for a military push into northeast Syria.
Trucks carrying concrete blocks, bulldozers and diggers entered a base in the town of Akcakale on Turkey's southern border with Syria in the late afternoon, while soldiers were brought in by buses.
Turkey says it is ready to advance into northeast Syria now that the United States has begun withdrawing troops from the Turkey-Syria frontier in an abrupt policy shift by US President Donald Trump widely criticized in Washington as a betrayal of America's allies, the Kurds.
The US move will leave Kurdish-led forces long allied to Washington vulnerable to attack by the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK), which brands them terrorists because of their links to Kurdish militants who have waged a long insurgency in Turkey.
Trump meanwhile denied the Kurds had been abandoned by the US pullback, praising Turkey as a trade partner and NATO ally in a softening of his tone hours after threatening Ankara's economy if it acted "off limits" in Syria.