US National Security Advisor John Bolton lands in Israel, warns Assad against the use of chemical weapons
U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton landed in Israel for an official visit to allay Israel’s concerns about the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria.
Bolton has warned the Syrian government it should not see the impending US military withdrawal from the country as an invitation to use chemical weapons.
“Looking forward to meeting with Israeli senior officials tomorrow to discuss a range of shared priorities between the United States and Israel, including the enduring U.S. commitment to Israel’s security,” Bolton said on his Twitter account.
The pullout announced before Christmas was initially expected to be completed within weeks, but the timetable has slowed as the president acceded to requests from aides, allies, and members of Congress for a more orderly drawdown.
“There is absolutely no change in the U.S. position against the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime and absolutely no change in our position that any use of chemical weapons would be met by a very strong response, as we’ve done twice before,” Bolton told reporters on his plane shortly before landing in Israel.
“So the regime, the Assad regime, should be under no illusions on that question,” Bolton added.
During his trip, Bolton is set to meet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan.