World News

Russian Federation says US Syria strike an unacceptable violation of sovereignty

Russian Federation says US Syria strike an unacceptable violation of sovereignty

The airstrikes are understood to have hit a pro-regime militia that was advancing on USA and coalition forces at At Tanf, according to Operation Inherent Resolve, the official name for the coalition fighting ISIS. The official said at this time it is not clear if the strike was intended as a warning or meant to hit regime forces, who were militia tied to the regime as opposed to regular army troops.

Base at At Tanf has been used by advisers from the US-led worldwide coalition to train Syrian rebels fighting ISIS.

The US characterised the strike as "defensive", with US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis telling reporters: "We are not increasing our role in the Syrian civil war, but we will defend our troops".

Syria's ally Russia said earlier today that the strike had hit civilians and was unacceptable, Russian news agencies reported.

Separately, Syria's military supported by Russian Federation and Iranian-backed militias are fighting against the militant group only sporadically, preferring to instead focus their efforts against pro-democracy rebel factions across the country.

The airstrikes, in the southern town of Tanf, mark the first time that the USA military deliberately hit the regime out of a perceived threat for American troops, which have steadily increased in numbers in recent months throughout Syria. Especially if such actions are committed against the Syrian armed forces...

Pro-Assad outlets reported that the US -led coalition hit the Iranian-backed Imam Ali brigade.

The Damscus-Baghdad highway was a major weapons supply route for Iranian weapons into Syria until Islamic State seized territory along the Iraqi Syrian border, regional intelligence sources says.

A United States defence official said the pro-government convoy had not responded to numerous warnings that it was "getting too close to coalition forces" stationed at Tanf.

The US-led coalition commander first attempted to get the pro-Assad forces out of the zone by dispatching two US aircraft as "a show of force". There were USA advisers operating at the base at the time of the airstrikes.

The strike destroyed four to five vehicles, including several construction vehicles and at least one tank, and appeared to have killed those inside, the official said.

A United States defence official told the FT the United States carried out a strike in southern Syria on Thursday.

"We notified the coalition that we were being attacked by the Syrian Army and Iranians in this point and the coalition came and destroyed the advancing convoy", Reuters cited a militant representative as saying.

"A convoy going down the road didn't respond to numerous ways for it to be warned off from getting too close to coalition forces in At-Tanf", a U.S. defence official told AFP on condition of anonymity.


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