Syrian army vows to eject US troops

Troops allied with Syria's President Bashar al-Assad are determined to "end the presence of the US" in the country, S...

Posted: Jan 16, 2018 6:38 AM
Updated: Jan 16, 2018 6:38 AM

Troops allied with Syria's President Bashar al-Assad are determined to "end the presence of the US" in the country, Syria's state-run news agency, SANA, said Monday, citing an official at the regime's Foreign Ministry.

The official told SANA that the Assad-aligned Syrian Arab Army would thwart the "conspiracy, end the presence of the US, its agents and tools in Syria, establish full control over the entire Syrian territory and preserve the country's sovereignty."

The US maintains some 2,000 troops in Syria

The statement comes after the US-led coalition fighting ISIS announced plans to boost border security in the region

The US maintains some 2,000 troops in Syria and has said its forces will continue to back local anti-ISIS forces there until the extremist group is defeated and the area is stabilized.

The Syrian statement comes after the US-led coalition fighting ISIS announced plans Sunday to boost border security in the region, a move that Syrian and Turkish officials have said would destabilize the region.

"The Coalition is working jointly with the Syrian Democratic Forces to establish and train the new Syrian Border Security Force (BSF). Currently, there are approximately 230 individuals training in the BSF's inaugural class, with the goal of a final force size of approximately 30,000," a spokesman for the US-led coalition, US Army Col. Ryan Dillon, told CNN in a statement.

The over 50,000-strong Syrian Democratic Forces are a mix of Kurdish and Arab fighters and have been the primary US-backed force fighting ISIS in Syria.

The Syrian official said the US decision "came within the framework of its destructive policies which aim at fragmenting the region, fueling tensions and conflicts and hindering solutions to its crises."

"The Ministry considered any Syrian citizen who takes part in the US-backed militia as a traitor to the Syrian state and people and will be treated as one, adding that these militias will hinder reaching a political solution to the situation in Syria," SANA reported.

Also on Monday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused the United States of "building an army of terror" on Turkey's border with Syria, state-run Anadolu reported.

Both Damascus and Ankara oppose the coalition's proposed border force because they view such trappings of statehood as helping to solidify the Syrian Democratic Forces' hold on the vast tracts of territory it has captured from ISIS east of the Euphrates river.

The coalition has stressed that the border force training is focused solely on security and not on other border activities like customs or immigration.

"This force is designed to establish security that supports the lasting defeat of ISIS, prevent the conditions under which it can re-emerge and restrict the flow of foreign terrorist fighters into Iraq, Turkey and Europe," Dillon told CNN on Monday.

The US has clashed with regime troops in the past, carrying out airstrikes against forces that were seen to pose a threat to a US base and shooting down a Syrian jet in June after it bombed Syrian Democratic Forces.

It is unlikely that the regime in Damascus possesses the capability to carry out its threat as a significant portion of its forces are fighting militants in the country's western province of Idlib.

"The Coalition remains focused on our support to the Syrian Democratic Forces in defeating remaining ISIS pockets in eastern Syria," Dillon said. "Coalition members are always prepared and have the inherent right to protect themselves against ISIS or any other threat."

Huntsville
Clear
65° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 65°
Florence
Clear
67° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 55°
Feels Like: 67°
Fayetteville
Scattered Clouds
67° wxIcon
Hi: 78° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 67°
Decatur
Clear
65° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 65°
Scottsboro
Clear
66° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 66°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 128818

Reported Deaths: 2284
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson18911337
Mobile13039289
Montgomery8628173
Madison750775
Tuscaloosa7180114
Lee570559
Shelby564550
Baldwin504749
Marshall382143
Etowah333447
Calhoun332039
Morgan318126
Houston269922
Elmore251947
DeKalb234619
St. Clair221335
Walker220780
Talladega205026
Limestone197319
Cullman183017
Franklin174128
Dallas173626
Russell17112
Autauga167324
Lauderdale164133
Colbert159326
Escambia155725
Blount154214
Jackson149411
Chilton147127
Dale132743
Covington130227
Coffee12708
Pike11519
Tallapoosa113183
Chambers112342
Clarke104917
Marion93728
Butler90838
Barbour8307
Marengo69919
Winston69912
Lowndes64527
Pickens63114
Bibb62810
Hale61228
Randolph60712
Bullock58514
Lawrence58220
Monroe5758
Geneva5634
Cherokee55516
Washington54413
Perry5376
Clay5367
Wilcox53011
Conecuh52311
Crenshaw52231
Macon47620
Henry4674
Fayette4189
Sumter41819
Lamar3452
Choctaw34412
Cleburne3206
Greene30015
Coosa1613
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 181439

Reported Deaths: 2216
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Shelby29800446
Davidson25840289
Hamilton903388
Rutherford890287
Knox880672
Williamson503036
Sumner462993
Wilson331841
Putnam301937
Montgomery292243
Bradley281816
Out of TN281123
Unassigned28036
Madison259656
Sevier250013
Blount242523
Maury218323
Robertson215133
Washington212332
Sullivan203831
Hamblen183125
Tipton171117
Trousdale16477
Hardeman151325
Gibson149219
Wayne14785
Bedford129516
Dyer125312
Dickson117612
Cumberland114317
Anderson111711
Fayette111118
Carter110827
Weakley110419
Henderson110119
Loudon10996
Greene107936
Coffee106912
Obion10669
Jefferson105114
McMinn104524
Macon100719
Warren9977
Monroe99416
Hardin95414
Lawrence93911
Lauderdale92815
Haywood90016
Franklin8757
Lake8712
Bledsoe8444
Roane8284
Carroll81617
Cheatham78410
McNairy78316
Rhea76611
White7639
Hawkins74716
Cocke7309
Marshall6985
Overton6734
Smith66910
Johnson6352
Henry5949
Chester5769
Lincoln5761
Giles54917
DeKalb54111
Hickman5154
Crockett49719
Marion4937
Decatur4556
Claiborne4234
Fentress4223
Campbell4153
Polk37511
Grainger3462
Benton3319
Union3311
Jackson3024
Morgan3023
Unicoi2741
Cannon2690
Grundy2305
Humphreys2243
Sequatchie2193
Meigs2163
Scott1972
Clay1825
Houston1780
Lewis1691
Stewart1672
Van Buren1490
Moore1451
Perry1400
Hancock1063
Pickett942

Community Events