US Forces Kidnapped Several Civilians in Syria's Deir ez-Zor, Local Media Says
© AP Photo / Baderkhan AhmadU.S. military convoy drives near the town of Qamishli, north Syria, Saturday, Oct. 26. 2019
© AP Photo / Baderkhan Ahmad
American troops remain stationed in Syria against the will of the nation's government and without a UN Security Council mandate to legitimise their stay. Washington justifies their presence by the alleged need to prevent the remnants of Daesh* from retaking local oil facilities.
US servicemen kidnapped several civilians in Syria in the course of a "large operation" carried out early on Monday in the province of Deir ez-Zor, the local news agency, SANA, has reported, citing local sources.
According to SANA, American troops were airdropped in the town of al-Busayrah at dawn, "raided" the township, and took several locals to an unknown location. The news agency did not specify how many people were missing and why they could have been taken.
The news agency's sources also said that the US forces killed three civilians in al-Busayrah as they fired "indiscriminately", shooting at homes and local farms.
SANA added that the American troops were backed by Kurdish militants from the Syrian Democratic Forces.
This is not the first time this month that Syrian media has reported of locals being kidnapped by American forces. According to SANA, an unspecified number of civilians were kidnapped from the town of al-Shuhail in Deir ez-Zor Province on 7 December. As was the case with the reported events in al-Busayrah, the US forces were accompanied by the Kurdish militants who control eastern Syria.
28 November 2021, 19:02 GMT
US troops have been deployed in Syria since 2014. Yet, their presence lacks legal backing because they were neither invited by Damascus, nor have a UN Security Council mandate.
The Syrian government has accused the US of stealing the country's natural resources, specifically oil, calling it the only reason for their illegal stay in the country. Washington insists that a small American military contingent remains in the country to keep the remanants of Daesh*, allegedly active in the country, from taking over the nation's oil extracting facilities.
*Daesh (also known as ISIS/ISIL/IS) is a terrorist organisation banned in Russia