Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, on Thursday slammed President Trump for withdrawing US troops from Syria and called the cease-fire between Turkey and Kurdish-led forces "far from a victory".
His speech on the Senate floor Thursday came just after Vice President Mike Pence and a team of US diplomats announced that they had negotiated a temporary ceasefire in northeast Syria, where Turkish forces have been waging a bloody offensive against America's Kurdish allies and civilians.
A deal to stop the fighting in Turkey - which Turkey insists is not actually a ceasefire - will force US -allied Kurdish forces to evacuate the area Turkey is conducting its military operation within five days.
Lawmakers from both parties have called the move a "betrayal" of Kurdish allies.
Romney and 2012 presidential nominee added that "the decision to abandon the Kurds violates one of our most sacred duties". It strikes at American honor.
Turkey agreed on Thursday to pause its offensive in Syria for five days to let Kurdish forces withdraw from a "safe zone" Ankara had sought to capture, in a deal hailed by the Trump administration and cast by Turkey as a complete victory.
Trump suggested Wednesday that Kurdish fighters might be a greater terror threat than the Islamic State group, and he welcomed the efforts of Russian Federation and the Assad government to fill the void left after he ordered the removal of almost all USA troops from Syria amid a Turkish assault on the Kurds.
United States says Turkey agrees to a ceasefire in Syria
Congress yesterday passed a vote 354-60 condemning the United States withdrawal ahead of Erdogan's invasion on October 9. Had Erdogan not agreed to a ceasefire, Trump warned that he would enact devastating sanctions on Turkey.
The truce was announced about 13 hours earlier by US Vice-President Mike Pence after talks in Ankara with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
"We can not keep track", Erdogan told reporters as he was returning from a summit in Azerbaijan, as quoted by Hurriyet, a Turkish daily.
The agreement for the 120-hour pause eased what had escalated into an unprecedented crisis between the United States and Turkey, but critics quickly accused President Donald Trump of again abandoning Kurdish allies.
At the time, Graham said the policy move could end up being the biggest mistake of Trump's presidency if it isn't reversed. "The United States Armed Forces will not support or be involved in the operation, and United States forces, having defeated the ISIS territorial 'Caliphate, ' will no longer be in the immediate area". "Whether they incorporate that later into a Turkish-controlled safe zone, it was not discussed in any detail", Jeffrey said.
Mr Pence said the deal provided for Turkey not to engage in military operations there, while Mr Cavusoglu said Turkey had given no commitments about Kobani.
But the USA withdrawal also leaves U.S. adversaries Russian Federation and Iran in a far stronger position in Syria.
"We know the truth about our Kurd allies", he said.