U.S. Says It Shot Down Drone That Attacked Fighters in Syria
By MICHAEL R. GORDONJUNE 8, 2017
WASHINGTON — An American warplane shot down a “pro-Syrian regime” drone on Thursday after the
drone attacked United States-backed fighters in southern Syria, the American military said.
American official said that the zone is intended to keep pro-Assad forces at a safe distance from the al-Tanf garrison but
that the American-backed Syrian fighters and their coalition advisers patrol and operate beyond the buffer area.
Their push eastward has brought them into proximity with American-backed Syrian fighters, who are being trained to battle the Islamic State
and are operating out of a garrison at al-Tanf, a Syrian town close to the intersection of the Syrian, Iraqi and Jordanian borders.
The confrontation was the latest clash in a potential proxy war in Syria
that pits Iranian-backed militias that support President Bashar al-Assad against Syrian fighters who have been trained by American, British and other coalition military advisers.
The episode occurred when the drone, which United States officials said appeared to be Iranian-made, dropped a munition
near the Syrian fighters, who were accompanied at the time by advisers from the American-led coalition.
The United States Central Command, which oversees military operations in the Middle East, said in a statement
that it wanted to keep the focus on fighting the Islamic State and was not looking for a confrontation with the Assad government — or with the Russian and Iranian-backed forces that are supporting it.

Leave a Reply