After pushback, Trump describes pullout from Syria as ‘slow & highly coordinated’

President TrumpDonald John TrumpLawmakers prep ahead of impeachment hearing Democrats gear up for high-stakes Judiciary hearing Warren says she made almost M from legal work over past three decades MORE on Sunday said the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria will be "slow & highly coordinated" after facing criticism for what some have described as an abrupt decision to pull out of the war-torn nation.

"I just had a long and productive call with President @RT_Erdogan of Turkey. We discussed ISIS, our mutual involvement in Syria, & the slow & highly coordinated pullout of U.S. troops from the area. After many years they are coming home. We also discussed heavily expanded Trade," Trump wrote on Twitter.


Trump last week announced that the U.S. would withdraw its 2,000 troops from Syria. The decision prompted the resignation of Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisThreatening foreign states with sanctions can backfire Overnight Defense: Erdoğan gets earful from GOP senators | Amazon to challenge Pentagon cloud contract decision in court | Lawmakers under pressure to pass benefits fix for military families Amazon to challenge Pentagon's 'war cloud' decision in federal court MORE, who reportedly attempted to dissuade Trump from making the move before he resigned.

In announcing the withdrawal last week, Trump claimed that he was doing so because the U.S. had defeated the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in the region. 

The decision has also been met with fierce bipartisan criticism from a number of lawmakers, who have disputed Trump's assertion that ISIS has been defeated in Syria.

Rep. Liz CheneyElizabeth (Liz) Lynn CheneyOvernight Defense — Presented by Boeing — Stopgap spending bill includes military pay raise | Schumer presses Pentagon to protect impeachment witnesses | US ends civil-nuclear waiver in Iran Cruz, Graham and Cheney call on Trump to end all nuclear waivers for Iran Pompeo: US ending sanctions waiver for site where Iran resumed uranium enrichment MORE (R-Wyo.), for example, said Sunday that Trump's decision to withdraw troops from Syria and possibly Afghanistan would "hand victories to our enemies."

"It's a very dangerous path to go down, and we shouldn't be going down it. We ought to make sure that we keep our troops there in order to prevent the establishment of safe havens from those groups that want to attack us," Cheney said on CBS's "Face the Nation."