The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that Russia’s military conducted several operations this month against a US-led coalition in Syria, raising concerns that it could lead to a direct conflict between US and Russian forces in Syria.
According to US military officials, one of these operations was carried out on Wednesday when Russia launched an airstrike on the al-Tanf garrison in Syria’s southeast.
American troops at the base, which is close to the Jordanian border, manage a mission to train and advise local fighters to counter the resurgence of ISIS.
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A US military official said that its military planes hit “a combat post in the garrison” after Russia informed the US via a communication line that it was conducting an operation in response to an alleged attack against Syrian government forces. attacked.
US officials believe that reporting to the US before the attack meant that Russia was “not actively targeting US troops but harassing the US mission in Syria.”
Although there were no US troops near the base when Russia did strike, causing no casualties among US or coalition troops, a US military official said the operation amounted to a “significant increase in provocation” this month.
According to the report, Russia’s such moves have raised concerns among US military officials as they fear “misassessment could escalate into an unexpected conflict between US and Russian forces in Syria.”
Army General Eric Kurilla, head of US Central Command, said the US aims to avoid conflict with Russia in Syria, however, Moscow’s latest moves amount to an escalation.
“We want to avoid miscalculations or actions that could lead to unnecessary conflict: this remains our goal,” Kurilla said in a statement.
“However, Russia’s recent behavior has been provocative and provocative.”
Tensions have risen between the US and Russia after President Vladimir Putin sent troops to Ukraine, which Moscow calls a “special military operation”.
Moscow claims the campaign against its pro-Western neighbor is aimed at “denying” the country. However, Ukraine and the West reject this as a baseless excuse for aggression.
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