3 Kamikaze Drones Attack US Military Bases in Syria

3 Kamikaze Drones Attack US Military Bases in Syria
3 Kamikaze Drones Attack US Military Bases in Syria

Demascus - Several drones laden with explosives targeted a United States (US) military base in southern Syria. One of the drones managed to hit the compound. The news was announced by US Central Command (CENTCOM).

Washington maintains only 1,000 troops in the Middle Eastern country, despite repeated demands from Damascus for US troops to withdraw. CENTCOM said the strike involved three drones and took place early Friday (20/1/2023) on the US garrison in Al-Tanf, Syria, where US troops have long been stationed alongside militia fighters previously seeking to overthrow the Syrian government.

“Two drones were shot down by Coalition Forces while one drone hit the compound, injuring two members of the Free Syrian Army partner force who were receiving medical treatment. No US troops were injured," the US military said.

CENTCOM added such an attack was "unacceptable" because it "puts our troops and our partners at risk and jeopardizes the fight against Islamic State (ISIS)." Located near the three-way border crossing with Iraq and Syria, the Al-Tanf outpost was established by US forces in 2016.

They soon joined the rebel faction that became known as Maghaweir al-Thowra (Revolutionary Command), which has since changed its name to the Syrian Free Army (in contrast to the former Free Syrian Army).

While Washington believes the "vetted opposition" group is meant to fight Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) terrorists and has abandoned its goal of overthrowing Syrian President Bashar Assad, US forces have faced controversy in recent months amid allegations of corruption and drug trafficking by its members.

In September, the US-led coalition was forced to fire the group's commander, with the military saying the move "happens to ensure the long-term success" of the militia. Al-Tanf garrison has experienced similar drone attacks on several occasions over the years, with sporadic attacks by unidentified actors.

Last summer, Russian troops who continue to support the government in Damascus carried out several airstrikes in the area against a group of “US-trained and equipped” militants who are said to have “committed terrorist acts and killed civilians.”

In addition to the 200 US troops based in Al-Tanf, some 700 troops operate elsewhere in Syria, mostly in the oil-rich northeast of the country, where they are allied with Kurdish fighters. The Syrian government has repeatedly declared Washington's military presence illegal, and continues to accuse US troops of stealing large amounts of the country's energy resources.

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