22 U.S Service Members Injured in a helicopter mishap in Northeast Syria
The U.S military reported late on Monday that a helicopter mishap in northeast Syria resulted in injuries to 22 U.S service members.
The military did not disclose the cause of the incident or provide specific details regarding the severity of injuries sustained.
U.S military’s Central Command also reported that ten of the injured service members were evacuated to higher-level care facilities outside the region, indicating the seriousness of their injuries.
Central Command, responsible for overseeing U.S troops in the Middle East, confirmed that there were no reports of enemy fire during the incident. Investigation is currently underway to determine the exact cause of the mishap.
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Requests for additional information made to the officials at U.S Central Command have not received an immediate response.
Currently, approximately 900 U.S personnel are deployed to Syria, primarily in the eastern region, with the objective of combating the remaining forces of the Islamic State. American troops in Syria have faced repeated attacks by militia groups backed by Iran over the past few years.
In March, a series of strikes and counter-strikes in Syria resulted in 25 U.S troops being wounded, along with the death of one U.S contractor and injuries sustained by another.
The initial deployment of U.S forces in Syria took place during the Obama administration’s campaign against the Islamic State, where they partnered with the Syrian Democratic Forces led by Kurdish forces.
Although the Islamic State no longer holds the same level of influence it had when it declared a caliphate in 2014, controlling significant portions of Syria and Iraq, a considerable number of fighters remain in isolated areas where neither the U.S-led coalition nor the Syrian army, supported by Russia and Iran-backed militias, exercise full control.
Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces, a crucial ally of the United States in the region, detain thousands of other Islamic State fighters in guarded detention facilities.
U.S officials expressed concerns that the Islamic State could still regain strength and pose a significant threat.
The ongoing threats from Iran-backed militias targeting U.S forces serve as a reminder of the intricate geopolitical dynamics at play in Syria. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad relies on support from Iran and Russia and views American troops as occupying forces.