US ground forces to accomplish combat missions in Syria

WASHINGTON, Nov. 03 (MNA) – The United States admitted on Monday that the members of the Special Operation Forces it intends to deploy in Syria, without Damascus consent, will take part directly in combat actions.

Ben Rhodes, the White House national security aide for strategic communications, said the main mission of those units is not fighting, but it is obvious that "we cannot rule out their engagement in armed actions" along with rebel groups that are fighting the ISIL in northern Syria.

According to Rhodes, those troops are intended to train, advise and reinforce the capacities of the pro-American groups that are acting on Syrian soil.

The US government announced Friday that around 50 members of the Special Operation Forces would be deployed in the next few days in Syria to coordinate the efforts of the military campaign of the Washington-led coalition.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said their task is not to combat, but to provide assistance and a more effective planning of the Kurd rebels' missions.

Nor this deployment, which will take place in northern Syria, has the authorization of the UN Security Council, and it would include the sending of A-10 Warthog combat planes and F-15 Eagle fighter planes to the Incirlik air base, in Turkey, as well as the increase of the assistance to Jordan and Lebanon.

In September, 2013, President Barack Obama vowed he wouldn’t allow sending ground units to Syria in order to avoid long conflict similar to those in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In the past few years, Special Operation Forces accomplished some secret advisory and espionage missions in Syria, but the deployment announced Friday will constitute the first permanent presence of US troops in that nation.





News Code 111610


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