Syria ceasefire: Trump hails a 'great day' for Turkey, Kurds

Fort Worth (United States) (AFP) –


US President Donald Trump on Thursday hailed the announcement of a "ceasefire" in northern Syria as a "great day" for Turkey and the Kurds.

"We have a five-day ceasefire," Trump told reporters, after US Vice President Mike Pence said that Ankara had agreed to suspend its military operation, and end it entirely once Kurdish fighters withdraw from a safe zone.

"It's a great day for the United States," the president said in Fort Worth, Texas, where he is to hold a reelection rally.

"It's a great day for Turkey," Trump said. "It's a great day for the Kurds. It's a great day for civilization."

"This is a situation where everybody's happy," Trump declared.

Trump has come under bipartisan fire in Washington for pulling US troops out of Syria, paving the way for the Turkish operation against the Kurds.

Trump said sanctions on Turkey "won't be necessary" now and heaped praise on Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

"He's a hell of a leader," Trump said. "He did the right thing.

"I have great respect for the president."

Asked whether he believed the ceasefire would last, Trump said "I think it's going to last."

"I think President Erdogan's very smart," he said. "He wants it to last."