WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Fewer than a half dozen of the US-trained Syrian fighters are currently engaged in combat against the Islamic State in Syria, US Commander of Central Command (CENTCOM) General Lloyd Austin said at a Senate hearing on Wednesday.
"The ones [fighters] that are in the fight is, we are talking four or five," Austin said when asked of the exact number of US-trained Syrian fighters currently engaged in combat against ISIL.
"As of September 15, our train and equip program, the specific program we have, we are now currently training 100 fighters and we have additional recruits in the pipeline."
Wormuth acknowledged that the number was "smaller than we hoped for," and attributed the low levels of recruitment to a "very rigorous training process" to meet US standards.
The United States has been supporting what it calls "moderate" Syrian rebels with financial aid and supplies of small arms.
Moreover, the United States has led a 62-nation coalition that has conducted airstrikes against the Islamic State in Syria since September 2014. Albeit without the approval of the Syrian government.