US military taught Syrian Kurds to operate combat drones
DAMASCUS, (BM) – Military exercises for the units of the Kurdish alliance of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) were held by an international coalition led by the United States, learned BulgarianMilitary.com citing a source of Krasnaya Vesna magazine in Syria on July 31.
The exercise took place in the Jabl Abdulaziz area in the west of Hasaka province and the Al-Omar oil field. They lasted for a total of nine days.
The PKK / YPG Kurdish units were briefed by 600 US troops and another 200 French. The coalition practiced the use of various weapons and equipment.
“The exercises mainly concerned airborne assault and target destruction by drones,” the source said. Part of the exercise was devoted to repelling attacks on military bases.
The activity of military relations between the Kurds in Syria and the American contingent there has intensified in recent months.
As we reported on June 5 an operation against IS militants began by units of the Kurdish association of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the US forces.
“SDF units have launched a campaign to track and prosecute ISIS cells in the desert in the east of Deir Ez-Zor,” the agency’s source said.
He added that the operation takes place in the Khabur River region [the eastern tributary of the Euphrates], as well as near the Syrian border with Iraq. The forces of the international coalition and the Iraqi army are involved in the anti-terrorist operation.
Recall that the main forces of the ISIS in Syria were defeated by the end of 2017. The state of the caliphatists was destroyed by the Syrian army, which was covered from the air by aircraft of the Russian aerospace forces.
Before Russia’s intervention in the Syrian conflict, ISIS had controlled 80% of the territory of Syria. Now there are separate cells left from the gangs that have gone underground.
But it is not just Islamic State that is a priority for the Syrian Kurds. Since US President Donald Trump announced the withdrawal of much of the US contingent to Syria, the Cups have had a second enemy, Turkey.
We recall that on March 30 the syrian Kurds attacked a Turkish and pro-Turkish positions in Syria by large-scale artillery attack.
According to the source, the SDF attacked the headquarters of the Al-Jaish Al-Watani group west of the city of Aazaz. Missiles were launched from the Tel Rafaat area controlled by the SDF.
In addition, the source reported an attack by Turkish artillery at SDF position in the villages of Maraanaz and Ain Dakna in the north of Aleppo province.
We add that the situation in the north of Aleppo remains tense after the Turkish military operation “Olive Branch”, which Ankara conducted in northern Syria in early 2018.
During the operation, the Turkish army and the pro-Turkish groups of the Syrian opposition occupied the region of the canton of Afrin, where previously the Kurds made up the ethnic majority. After this, the SDF did not stop the guerrilla war against the Turkish military and militants of the Syrian opposition.
War in Syria
In February, Turkey lost at least 62 troops killed in Syria, nearly 100 soldiers were wounded, dozens of Turkish armored vehicles were destroyed and more than ten drones, including drone, were shot down. Washington has repeatedly accused Moscow of involvement in the deaths of Turkish soldiers, Russia rejects these allegations.
In early March, the presidents of Russia and Turkey, Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan, concluded an agreement according to which a ceasefire came into force in the Idlib de-escalation zone.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad later said that if the US and Turkish military did not leave the country, Damascus would be able to use force.
The reason for the Russian-Turkish negotiations was a sharp aggravation of the situation in Idlib, where in January a large-scale offensive by the Syrian army against the positions of the armed opposition and terrorists began.
Government forces recaptured nearly half of the Idlib de-escalation zone and left behind a number of Turkish observation posts. After that, Ankara sharply increased its military contingent in the region and launched the operation “Spring Shield” to push the Syrian troops. Turkey is also supported by militants loyal to it.
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