Syrian government must take over eastern Syria: Russia

US National Security Advisor John Bolton

Ankara regards the YPG as terrorists and has been infuriated by US support for the group in the fight against Islamic State.

The deployment was coordinated with the US-backed militia in Manbij, the spokesman for the Manbij Military Council said.

He added that Turkey would also increase coordination with Russian Federation in Syria as Erdogan is to discuss the situation with President Vladimir Putin.

Trump's shock order came after Erdogan convinced him that Turkey could eliminate the last remaining pockets of ISIS after the jihadists suffered a series of military defeats. "While nothing definite is being planned, the President is open to a potential meeting in the future", a White House spokesperson later said on Monday evening. Turkey is planning to invade in the course of this replacement, and is coordinating with te United States and the pullout and deployment.

A Turkish foreign ministry delegation would go to Washington for talks in early January, he added.

According to USA media reports, Mattis went to the White House in person to persuade Trump to reconsider his decision but Trump refused.

"We have defeated ISIS [Daesh] in Syria, my only reason for being there during the Trump Presidency."

The Turkish leader has also slammed American officials for rejecting his requests to hand over Fethullah Gulen, a powerful opposition figure living in the USA, whom Ankara accuses of having masterminded the July 2016 coup attempt.

Chemezov added that Turkey would pay 45 percent of the cost of the agreement up front, while Russian Federation would provide loans to cover the remaining 55 percent. We will use them if need be.

"We will see what President Donald Trump's declared decision to pull out of Syria comes to", he added.

Turkey has sent reinforcements at the border with Syria in the previous days, with local media reporting that some vehicles had crossed it.

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Speaking to air force cadets at the Hatzerim Air Force Base on December 26, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Trump's decision to remove American troops from Syria "does not change our policies-we will maintain our red lines in Syria and everywhere else". The two Syrian cities are held by Kurdish YPG militants.

If Turkey were to fight ISIS alone and then left the battles to Syrian Arab proxies, "militarily weaker" than the extremists, it would not be very effective, Khatib said.

"We must not forget that Turkey is now threatening to launch a new military operation against the Syrian Kurds".

"To repel a Turkish attack, we are discussing various options ..."

Trump's move has sparked dismay among many allies and turmoil within his administration.

Mr Trump has much else to worry about this Christmas season, beyond insisting that Mr Mattis should depart by the new year instead of at the end of February, presumably as a reaction to the response elicited by the departing defence secretary's mildly critical letter of resignation, in which he obliquely berates the President for failing to live up to the expectations of his Western allies.

It is part of the wider build up of forces in the area.

But relations between the Turkish and American leaders appear to have improved substantially since a crisis in the summer over the detention of a United States pastor, since released.

Moscow will also host a meeting of the Astana guarantors - Turkey, Iran, and Russian Federation - in the near future.

Turkey's strained ties with Washington have improved immeasurably in the past week.

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