In a new turn in the military policy in the region, the Secretary of Defense, Mark Esper, announced that they will remain contingent in the country, although it does not need how many they will be, nor what type of force they will have.
Washington has abruptly changed its policy in Syria and now announces that it will partially reverse the withdrawal of troops that President Donald Trump announced unexpectedly weeks ago and that opened the doors to a Turkish offensive against the Kurdish population in the region.
Defense Secretary Mark Esper confirmed Friday that the Pentagon will leave some forces in Syria to protect oil facilities in the north of that country and prevent them from falling into the hands of fighters of the so-called Islamic State.
“We are also considering how we can reposition forces in the area to make sure we can control the oil fields. We are now taking some actions.
I will not go into the details, ”said Esper in a media appearance at the end of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization meeting.
The NATO meeting in Brussels was dominated by the sudden US withdrawal from Syria and the Turkish offensive. The surprise change of withdrawing troops from the war-torn country, after he declared victory over ISIS.
The day before, President Trump had shown the possibility that US forces would remain in the area watching over the oil facilities, which «would include some mechanized forces.»
The president’s statements came simultaneously with the announcement of the suspension of the economic sanctions imposed days ago to Turkey.
The White House argument is that the cease-fire that was agreed with the Turkish government to protect the Kurdish population has become permanent.
However, observers and media have noted that hostilities never stopped completely, partly because a mechanism to monitor the truce that was originally one week had not been established.
The deployment of heavy weapons in Syria would represent a significant escalation, which would require a contingent of additional troops to operate and maintain the vehicles, as well as forces to protect their bases.
Earlier this month, Trump ordered that virtually all 1,000 US troops withdraw from Syria, a measure that received a bipartisan conviction as an abandonment of Kurdish allies in the fight against ISIS.