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    US Marines Arrive in Syria to Aid Raqqa Offensive

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    US marines reportedly have arrived in Syria to establish an outpost in support of the operation to retake Raqqa.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — US marines have arrived in Syria to establish an outpost in support of the operation to retake the Syrian city of Raqqa from Daesh terror group, US media reported on Wednesday.

    The marines belong to the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit that departed from San Diego in October of 2016, The Washington Post reported citing US officials.

    The force includes an artillery battery capable of firing 155-millimeter shells from M777 Howitzers, according to the report.

    The marines will be supporting US partner forces on the ground that lead the offensive to liberate Raqqa from Daesh codenamed Operation Euphrates Rage.

    The operation was launched by the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) on November 5, 2016.

    Spokesman Adrian Rankine-Galloway told Sputnik that the Department of Defense would not comment on movement of US troops in Syria because of security concerns.

    "Due to operational security considerations I cannot provide information at this time about movement and deployments of US forces in Syria," Rankine-Galloway said.

    The US-led coalition of 68 nations is conducting airstrikes, ground-based and rocket-propelled artillery fire against Daesh in Syria and Iraq.

    Related:

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    Pentagon Plan to Free Syria's Raqqa Urges Increase in US Military Participation
    Much to Turkey's Dismay: US Expects Syrian Kurds to Join Raqqa Liberation
    Erdogan: US Has No Clear Idea How to Liberate Syria's Raqqa From Daesh
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    Syria, United States, Raqqa
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