Trump Announces Permanent Ceasefire, Turkey Sanctions Lifted

Insists outcome is created by US 'and nobody else'

President Trump has announced that he is lifting all sanctions against Turkey for the time being, citing a “permanent” ceasefire between Turkey and the Kurds and the withdrawal of Kurds from the Turkish-occupied safe zone.

Trump credited the US for getting the Kurds out of the safe zone, and for everything else, conspicuously not mentioning the Russian deal with Turkey which was reached only the day before, and came after pointed US warnings to the Kurds not to talk with Russia.

Trump appeared to be quite conscious that this was a factor, declaring “this was an outcome created by us, the United States, and nobody else.” That’s his position, but it’s unlikely many will see it that way.

Trump said this validated his troop withdrawal from Syria, while also insisting that US troops are going to remain in Syria to protect oil reserves that were taken by the US during the war.

Trump also shrugged off his own declaration of a permanent ceasefire, saying “permanent” doesn’t mean much in that region. He also threatened new sanctions against Turkey if “something happens that we are not happy with.”

So long as Trump personally gets credit for what happened, even as Russia and Syria get the Kurds out of the north, he seems content with the status quo. If his military control over Syria’s oil is threatened, or if Turkey does something he’s not happy with, like crediting Russia, he’s likely to fly off the hinges again.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.