A statement released Friday by the Department of Defense in London confirmed that the second soldier killed in the blast was British and that the mission was to fight fighters with the Islamic State.
Coalition forces were dispatched to Syria along with Kurdish militia allies to fight against the Islamic State. But with this group, the seven-year civil war in Syria has entered a dangerous new phase.
Two American allies, Turkey and the Kurds controlling parts of northern Syria are fighting each other. And the Kurds and coalition forces are in a strained situation with the Syrian government and its allies ̵
On Thursday, President Trump proposed that the United States "pull out" its 2,000 troops from Syria "very soon". The comments surprised officials at the Department of Defense who claimed that some kind of American presence in parts of Syria might be necessary to avoid the conditions that led to the rise of the Islamic State – and also to avoid tariffs in the country after Russia.
"We'll be out pretty soon," Mr. Trump said during a rally in Ohio. "We will have 100 percent of the caliphate, as they call it – sometimes called 'land' – and pick it up quickly and quickly."
Nonetheless, Pentagon officials have repeatedly said in recent months that a complete withdrawal of US troops could leave a gap. Defense Minister Jim Mattis said on Tuesday that, while US forces are no longer "offensive on the ground," they continue to play a role. "We continue operations in Syria," he said.
It was unclear how the death of the American soldier in the recent attack would affect Mr. Trump's thoughts about a possible American withdrawal. In addition, the Islamic State remains in the eastern half of Syria, and Defense Department officials warn that the proposals that the group has fully enforced underestimate the presence of the Islamic State in Syria.
How to demonstrate the complexity of the situation in Syria On Thursday, French President Emmanuel Macron wanted to position his country as a bridge between the Kurdish fighters and Turkey by acting as mediator in talks – an attempt by the Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan was rejected.
Mr. Macron told a delegation of Syrian Kurds that France had "honored" the victims and crucial role of the Kurdish fighters in the fight against the Islamic state, which was largely driven out of Syria, and expressed concern over Afrin, the northern enclave, Turkey recently displaced the Kurds.
However, he did not, at least in his public statements, refrain from offering military support to the Kurds. It was a similar tightrope walk as in February by Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, who commented on the question of Turkey's invasion of northern Syria that France had already warned that "it was unacceptable to add war to the war"
. Sir. Erdogan mocked his French counterpart on Friday and said that he met with Mr Macron last week and that the French leader said "weird things" that demanded Mr. Erdogan to say "harsh".
"We do not need a negotiator," Erdogan said. "Since when does Turkey have the problem of sitting down with terrorist groups, where did you get that?" You can sit down with terrorist groups, but Turkey is fighting terror like in Afrin. "You go on, who do you think? that you can pronounce the word negotiating between Turkey and terrorist groups? "
Continue reading the main story