Brett McGurk, the US envoy to the global coalition fighting ISIL, resigned this week over his disagreement with President Donald Trump’s surprise decision to pull US troops out of Syria, US media reported on Saturday, citing unnamed sources.
Both the Associated Press and CBS news reported the departure, saying McGurk submitted his resignation letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday, a day after Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said he was leaving his post.
In the letter, which was described to the Associated Press by an official familiar with its contents, McGurk said fighters with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) were on the run, but not yet defeated as Trump had said.
He added that the premature pull-out of American forces from Syria would create the conditions that gave rise to ISIL.
McGurk, whose resignation is effective on December 31, was planning to leave the job in mid-February after a US-hosted meeting of foreign ministers from the coalition countries, but he felt he could continue no longer after Trump’s decision to withdraw from Syria and Mattis’s resignation, according to the official speaking to the Associated Press.