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U.S. Troops Withdrawal from Syria Could Result in Regional Instability

The possibility of U.S. troops withdrawing from Syria is sparking concerns about regional stability and the potential resurgence of ISIS.

This situation highlights the complex role of the U.S. in the region and its implications for the Middle East.

U.S. Troop Presence in Syria

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The U.S. currently stations approximately 900 troops in Syria, primarily to combat ISIS and Iranian-backed militias.

Recent discussions about their potential withdrawal have sparked concern regarding regional stability.

No Withdrawal Plans

Credit: KIEV, UKRAINE – Dec 07, 2015: Vice president of USA Joe Biden during an official visit to Kiev, Ukraine — Photo by palinchak

Despite rumors, the Biden administration has indicated no plans for a U.S. withdrawal from Syria.

The U.S. remains committed to countering ISIS and collaborating with local partners.

Consequences of Withdrawal

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Sinam Sherkany Mohamad, the Syrian Democratic Council’s representative, emphasized the critical importance of U.S. forces in Syria.

She warned that a U.S. withdrawal would put the entire region at risk.

Threat to Minorities

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Mohamad highlighted the potential danger to persecuted minorities in the event of U.S. troop withdrawal.

She stressed that these groups, crucial in defeating ISIS, would face retaliation from the Assad regime and Turkish government.

ISIS Fighter Detainment

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The U.S. forces play a key role in detaining over 12,500 hardened ISIS fighters in Syria.

Mohamad expressed concerns about these fighters potentially rejoining battlefields if the U.S. withdraws.

U.S. Mission Continuity

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A senior U.S. official and a State Department spokesperson reaffirmed the U.S.’s ongoing mission in Syria.

They emphasized the focus on the enduring defeat of ISIS and continued collaboration with local partners.

Iran’s Regional Ambitions

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Mohamad pointed out Iran’s long-term strategy to control the Levant’s historic capitals, seeking dominance in Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon.

She underscored the strategic importance of the Autonomous Region in blocking Iran’s hegemonic pursuits.

Russian and Iranian Influence

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The Institute for the Study of War reported Iran and Russia’s efforts, alongside the Syrian regime, to expel the U.S. from Syria.

This is part of a broader campaign to bolster the Assad regime’s legitimacy and extend their control.

SDF’s Anti-Terrorism Efforts

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The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have been actively combating terrorism in Syria.

They recently conducted an operation targeting and killing senior ISIS leader Muhammed Atiyah in Deir Ezzor.

ISIS Leader Eliminated

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Muhammed Atiyah, also known as Abu Mahmoud, was responsible for assassinations in the region.

His elimination marks a significant success in the fight against ISIS.

Rising ISIS Activities

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Mohamad reported an increase in ISIS activities in areas like Deir Ezzor and the Syrian desert.

She warned of escalating ISIS operations due to ongoing regional tensions.

SDF Operations Against ISIS

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The SDF continues to conduct operations against ISIS cells in collaboration with international coalition forces.

Their efforts have led to significant disruptions of ISIS activities in the region.

Turkish Military Actions

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Turkey has intensified its military operations in northern Syria and Iraq against Kurdish militants.

These strikes have targeted various PKK and YPG facilities, viewed as terrorist groups by Turkey.

U.S.-Kurdish Relations

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The U.S. maintains support for the YPG, a key ally in the fight against ISIS.

This stance contrasts with Turkey’s classification of the YPG as a terrorist organization.

Historical Context of Conflict

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David Adesnik, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, shed light on the historical animosity between Turks and Kurds.

He described the ongoing conflict within Turkey and the complex dynamics in northern Syria.

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