Turkey president: Trump arming Syrian Kurds a ‘mistake’

Turkey president: Trump arming Syrian Kurds a ‘mistake’
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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday strongly criticized President TrumpDonald John TrumpMost Americans break with Trump on Ukraine, but just 45 percent think he should be removed: poll Judge orders Democrats to give notice if they request Trump's NY tax returns Trump's doctor issues letter addressing 'speculation' about visit to Walter Reed MORE’s decision to arm Syrian Kurds in the fight against ISIS, announced one day earlier.

“I hope very much that this mistake will be reversed immediately,” Erdogan said according to Foreign Policy. "We want to believe that our allies would prefer [to] be side by side with ourselves rather than with the terror groups.”

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu echoed Ergodan’s remarks, insisting that “every weapon [the Kurds] obtain is a threat to Turkey.”

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U.S. officials announced Tuesday that Trump had signed off on a plan "to equip Kurdish elements of the Syrian Democratic Forces" in the fight to retake Raqqa from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

“The SDF, partnered with enabling support from U.S. and coalition forces, are the only force on the ground that can successfully seize Raqqa in the near future,” Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White said in a statement.

The SDF is a coalition of Arab and Kurdish fighters that has been working to isolate the city, but Ankara considers the group terrorists and an extension of outlawed Kurdish insurgents in Turkey.

A spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition against ISIS said Wednesday that America would distribute small arms and equipment to Syrian Kurds “very quickly.”

Defense Secretary James Mattis, meanwhile, downplayed any tension with Turkey over arming a group it sees as a violent enemy, telling reporters "we will work together" with the NATO ally. 

"It's not always tidy, but we work out the issues," Mattis told reporters in Lithuania.