President Trump has not signed the expected executive order on establishing safe zones in Syria, but the White House has insisted that Trump and Saudi King Salman had agreed to the idea during a weekend phone call. Syria has not been brought into the discussion, however, and that’s not sitting well with Syria.
Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem warned during a meeting with the UN refugee agency that any attempts to establish a safe zone without coordination with their government would be inherently unsafe, as well as a violation of Syrian national sovereignty.
There have been no details offered by the Trump Administration on what form the safe zones would take, and Pentagon officials were said to be quite concerned by what they considered an “ambiguous” proposal. Publicly, Pentagon officials had urged people to withhold judgement until more details were offered.
The safe zones were originally reported to be part of the refugee ban executive order, but was not contained in the final draft. The reports said the order was to give the State Department and Pentagon 90 days to come up with a plan for the safe zones.