U.S. troops to stay put in Syria - report
The Biden administration is pulling all American troops out of Afghanistan and formally transitioning to an advisory role in Iraq. But the U.S. military operation in Syria has seen no changes — and officials expect hundreds of troops to remain in the country for the foreseeable future, Politico reported.
Roughly 900 U.S. troops, including a number of Green Berets, will remain in Syria to continue supporting and advising the Syrian Democratic Forces fighting ISIS (the terrorist group banned in Russia) — the same role they have played since the American-led intervention in 2014, according to a senior Biden administration official.
“I don’t anticipate any changes right now to the mission or the footprint in Syria,” the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive plans.
“In Syria, we're supporting Syrian Democratic Forces in their fight against ISIS,” the senior administration official said. "That's been quite successful, and that's something that we’ll continue.”
The confirmation comes as Biden and Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi announced on Monday that the mission in Iraq will transition from combat to advisory by the end of the year.
“They are not kicking in doors, apprehending the enemy, etc.,” the official said. As in Iraq, the United States’ primary local partner, the Syrian Democratic Forces, has been in the lead in combat operations against the Islamic State, with U.S. and coalition troops providing support from afar, the official added.