USA dismisses fears of wider war in Syria

USA dismisses fears of wider war in Syria

A US -led coalition in Syria killed more than 100 troops allied with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Wednesday.

The US-led coalition said on Thursday it conducted a defensive strike against an unprovoked attack near the Euphrates River by hundreds of troops aligned with the Syrian regime, backed by artillery, tanks, multiple-launch rocket systems and mortars, a step revealing Washington's plan to draw a red line for Damascus and Russian Federation.

USA forces working in a headquarters for Syrian Kurdish and Arab forces came under fire from pro-Syrian forces Wednesday, which included Russian-made tanks and artillery, officials said.

The U.S. -led coalition said its action in eastern Syria was in "self-defense", citing a major attack on its allied forces and U.S. advisers in Deir el-Zour province by 500 fighters.

While SANA insisted the pro-government troops were battling Islamic State fighters, it also admitted to launching an assault on the Syrian Democratic Forces, a Kurdish-led group opposed to Syrian President Bashar Assad.

Channels of communication between the USA and Russian Federation were open throughout the Thursday night clash, Veale said, and the U.S. told Russian Federation before the attack.

"Coalition officials were in regular communication with Russian counterparts before, during and after the thwarted (pro-regime forces) attack", Veale said.

Although Turkey has backed opposition troops since the Syrian conflict began in 2011, Ankara has moved closer to Assad's ally, Moscow.

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Following the incident, the Russian military talked to the coalition through the established communication channels, with the latter stating that Al-Isba was under the control of SDF and U.S. troops.

"You've all seen how we reacted to that", Mattis said, referring to last year's cruise missile strikes. In the eastern Syrian province of Deir az Zur UDF struggles against the Islamic State group east of the Euphrates.

Russian Federation is the regime's main ally on the ground in Syria and in the worldwide arena, frequently using its permanent seat on the Security Council to provide Damascus with diplomatic cover within the global community. Roughly "20 to 30 artillery and tank rounds landed within 500 meters" of the headquarters before the USA -led coalition carried out strikes in self-defense. The official says about 100 of the attackers were killed.

"As a result of the shelling, 25 Syrian militias were injured", the statement said.

The coalition observed a slow buildup of pro-regime forces over the past week, she added. "The incident was caused by uncoordinated reconnaissance and search operations plans of the Syrian militias with the Russian command task force in the locality of Salhiyah".

This latest attack raises questions about whether USA troops might exchange fire with Russian forces, which back Assad.

It was in this complex military and political environment that the pro-Assad fighters shelled a Syrian Democratic Forces headquarters about five miles east of the Euphrates in Khusham, Syria, late Wednesday. "Plans for the actual partition of Syria do exist, and we are aware of that".

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