Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is concerned over U.S. President Donald Trump's plan to withdraw from Syria and has tried to convince him not to, U.S. officials speaking on condition of anonymity said Wednesday.
A phone call earlier on the same day between Trump and Netanyahu grew tense over the Israeli leader's concerns that the U.S. will withdraw and allow Israel's enemies to gain a further foothold in a neighboring country.
In his haste to withdraw from Syria, Trump stands alone. The Pentagon, the State Department and CIA are all deeply concerned about the potential ramifications if the U.S. leaves behind a power vacuum in Syria, as are Israel, Arab leaders and other nations in the U.S.-led coalition that has fought Daesh terrorist group in Iraq and Syria since 2014.
U.S. President Donald Trump first made his surprise announcement on March 29, saying the U.S. would withdraw from Syria in the near future.
When asked about Trump's withdrawal statement, the Pentagon decided to refer to the White House, while the State Department's Heather Nauert said she was "not aware of" the decision, declining to comment further.
On the other hand, General Joseph Votel, the commander of the U.S. Central Command which coordinates anti-Daesh operations in Iraq and Syria, implied that the United States will not yet leave Syria, saying there "are still some areas where Daesh terrorists are present."