Local resident concerned about family, others in Syria after U.S. troop withdrawal

Local News

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Sumaya Hamadmad was just three years old when her family fled Syria but she still has aunts, uncles and cousins living there.

So the Columbus resident is now keeping a close eye on the Turkish military offensive launched this week in the northern part of Syria.

“I think this is going to create more vacuum in the region, more chaos,” Hamadmad said.

Turkish troops moved in shortly after U.S. troops moved out.

President Donald Trump announced the sudden withdrawal of U.S. troops from the region on Sunday.

“I know that for the civilians in the region, it’s bad,” Hamadmad said. “Even for the American interest for the long scheme of things — it’s not a good idea.”

The European’s Union foreign policy chief is calling on Turkey to cease its military action. 

Federica Mogherini said in a written statement Wednesday that “renewed armed hostilities in the north-east will further undermine the stability of the whole region, exacerbate civilian suffering and provoke further displacements.”

The EU says Turkey’s “unilateral action” threatens the progress of the U.S.-led coalition to defeat the Islamic State extremist group.

Hamadmad says her relatives live far enough away that they are not threatened by Turkey’s offensive but she worries about the chaos that might result.

“Those in Hama and Damascus — I’m more worried about them from the Syrian regime, the greatest evil in that region, than from what’s happening in the northeast,” Hamadmad said.

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