"Turkish Foreign Minister slams U.S. for having ‘no clear strategy’ on Syria" PBS NewsHour 4/3/2019
SUMMARY: Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu slammed the United States’ Syria strategy and Middle East peace plan, saying Wednesday that one was underdeveloped and the other might not exist.
“It seems that there is no clear strategy yet” by the U.S. to dial back its military presence in Syria, Cavusoglu said in an interview with PBS NewsHour anchor and managing editor Judy Woodruff.
Cavusoglu said Turkey was getting different signals from President Donald Trump and other U.S. departments, including the military. Trump tweeted last December that the United States was withdrawing all of its troops from Syria, but since then he has gradually dialed back that declaration and committed to keeping a residual force in the country.
Turkey’s foreign minister also said he doubted the existence of a U.S. peace plan for Israel and the Palestinians — an effort that Trump’s son-in-law and White House adviser Jared Kushner has been leading for the U.S.. “Until today, there is no peace plan,” Cavusoglu said. “We are not sure whether there will be.”
He added that Trump’s decision to move the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem showed the President’s bias towards Israel. Trump’s recent policy change recognizing Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which Israel seized from Syria during the Six-Day war in 1967, was another decision that “everybody has been concerned about,” Cavusoglu said.
“Everybody believes the U.S. is no longer a balanced or objective” leader on the world stage, he said.