Russia and Turkey have agreed to share control of Syria`s northern border to share an agreement between President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, reached last Thursday. The Kurdish withdrawal effectively achieved the main objective of evacuating Kurdish forces from the border area, prompting Ankara to launch the campaign. Following the evacuation of Kurdish forces from the “safe zone”, Turkey has committed to a lasting ceasefire under the agreement, but is not required to withdraw its troops from the country. Before the announcement of the agreement, the United States had Turkey and Russia before “any agreement… This would undermine the security and stability and current calm that we currently have in the far north-east of Syria,” said the senior administration official. The agreement also does not mention Syrian President Bashar al-Assad (or his Russian and Iranian supporters), who has since allied with the Syrian Kurds. He has moved to parts of Kurdish territory and, as Assad and Turkey are technically enemies in the war in Syria, it does not seem that he is going nicely to Turkey to conquer Syrian territory. In a speech in Fort Worth, Texas, where he was scheduled to hold an election campaign, the president said all parties benefited from the agreement. “This is a great day for Turkey. This is a great day for the Kurds. The agreement, which aims to separate hardened enemies in an unstable area of Syria, faces obvious obstacles. The text raised a number of pressing questions, including whether combatants would meet their commitments.
On 22 October, Turkey also agreed with Russia to allow the terrorist group YPG/PKK to withdraw from the security zone. Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), a co-supporter of the bipartisan legislation introduced by Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) and Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), called the agreement “a capitulation to Turkey at the expense of our Kurdish allies.” The United States and Turkey today announced a historic agreement that ended a week of hostilities in the border region of Syria: the agreement represents “exactly what we wanted” in talks with the United States, a Turkish official told reuters news agency. Pence, who negotiated with the Turkish head of state at the presidential palace in Ankara, called the deal a hard-won victory and paid tribute to President Trump`s leaders and Turkey`s friendship for their success. The agreement gave Erdogan concessions that he could not obtain during years of negotiations with the United States and justified in some way his decision to act militarily. Pence called the ceasefire agreement, although Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu called it a “pause in Turkey`s operation” and a “non-ceasefire.” Robert Malley, who served as a senior White House official during the Obama administration and is now president of the International Crisis Group, called the agreement a “capitulation disguised as a victory.” On Wednesday, Turkey`s foreign minister said there were violations of the agreement between Turkey and the United States on northern Syria and that he had communicated it to his American counterpart. The ceasefire agreement makes no mention of any Turkish withdrawal from Syria, where The Turkish armed forces and their Syrian rebel allies have travelled about 20 kilometres across a wide stretch of territory.