March 20, 2018
As Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan indicates the likelihood of a Turkish incursion into the area of Manbij in Syria, which is presently controlled by majority-Kurdish forces, the United States Department of Defense has said that there is no indication that its troops will be moved out of the area.
Colonel Robert Manning was asked whether the United States intended to remain in the area.
“I’ll have to get back to you on that. I have no indication to do otherwise,” he told a Pentagon briefing.
The Manbij area is west of the Euphrates River, an area the United States had previously told Turkey would remain out of the hands of Kurdish forces. But Kurdish-led fighters did cross the river to seize the territory from the Islamic State (ISIS) in 2016 and have remained there since with U.S. support.