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Trump defends troop drawdown in northern Syria and says ISIS fighters will escape to Europe

Trump defends Syria move
Trump defends decision to withdraw troops from northern Syria 17:41

President Trump offered no verbal support Wednesday afternoon for Kurdish allies he is accused of abandoning, as Turkey begins to invade Syria. Instead, Mr. Trump said they have "wanted to fight, and that's the way it is."

Mr. Trump also said ISIS fighters in the region are "going to be escaping to Europe." The president has said Turkey is now responsible for keeping ISIS fighters in prison in the region. 

"Well they're going to be escaping to Europe, that's where they want to go, they want to go back to their homes. But Europe didn't want them from us. We could have given it to them, they could have trials, they could have done whatever they wanted. But as usual, it's not reciprocal..." the president said. 

Mr. Trump made the comments in the White House's Roosevelt Room on Wednesday, after signing executive orders related to regulatory reforms. 

Experts and even some of the president's staunchest allies on Capitol Hill have blasted Mr. Trump for ordering U.S. troops to withdraw from northern Syria, leaving Kurdish allies who banded with the U.S. in the fight against ISIS to fend for themselves. Turkey is already launching military attacks in northern Syria.

"Pray for our Kurdish allies who have been shamelessly abandoned by the Trump administration. This move ensures the reemergence of ISIS," Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, one of the president's most ardent defenders, tweeted earlier Wednesday. 

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