US military patrol blocked near Syria’s Qamishlo: reports
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – A US Coalition convoy patrolling near the village of Hamo near Qamishlo on Saturday was stopped at a checkpoint by Syrian government troops and government loyalists, who forced the convoy to change its route.
Today a US convoy comprising five armored vehicles was halted by individuals supportive of the Syrian government, reports the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR).— Kurdistan 24 English (@K24English) August 26, 2023
🎥 Submitted to Kurdistan 24 pic.twitter.com/t52UvUa5Lw
The convoy, comprising five armored vehicles, was halted by individuals supportive of the Syrian government and the Syrian military. They proceeded to take down the US flag from one of the armored vehicles, according to the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) war monitor.
Syrian government media claimed the convoy was expelled by locals with support of the Syrian army.
The SOHR said also on Aug. 20, members of a Syrian government checkpoint intercepted a Coalition patrol, preventing it from passing through the village of Tal Dahab in the countryside of Qamishlo.
The US maintains a military presence in northeast Syria that supports the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) against ISIS.
There are officially around 900 US service members in Syria and Coalition forces regularly carry out regular security patrols in the Hasakah province.
In general, the patrols have been welcomed by the local Kurdish population and preferred over those by Russian forces that also patrol near the border following a Turkish-Russian ceasefire and separate US-Turkish ceasefire deal in Oct. 2019.
Nevertheless, Iran and the Syrian government vehemently oppose the US presence in the country. They have consistently called on the US to exit Syria.
The Syrian government controls a number of Arab villages to the south of Qamishlo and has intermittently obstructed US patrols.
Moreover, according to the latest Pentagon Lead Inspector General report to the US Congress, which covers the period from April 1, 2023 – June 30, 2023, “Iran-aligned militias conducted limited, ineffective attacks on U.S. and Coalition forces in Syria.”
"They’re probably challenging the Coalition troops that recently arrived in NE Syria. The first 30 days (environmental unfamiliarity & adapting to driving heavy vehicles) and last 30 days (complacency) can be dangerous during combat deployments," retired US Army Col. Myles B. Caggins III, a former spokesman for the US-led Coalition in Iraq and a senior fellow at the New Lines Institute for Strategy and Policy, told Kurdistan 24.