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Tuesday, January 18, 2022
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US officials say humanitarian effort in Syria is another means to counter ISIS

The visits are done in partnership with the Syrian Defense Forces, (SDF) which operate in the region alongside the US in a years-long effort to root out any ISIS fighters.

The medical visits are seen by the US as part of the effort to work with SDF to bring stability to the area, so ISIS cannot take hold, a defense official directly familiar with the program told CNN. Overall, there are about 900 US troops in Syria.

US officials insist the humanitarian effort is not “mission creep,” because the focus is to provide another means to counter ISIS. But it is a step beyond the initial troop deployment by former US President Donald Trump, aimed at his goal of seizing oil field revenue in the region.

US officials are emphasizing the medical work is led by SDF, and US forces work under them. However, security remains a sensitive question given ISIS, Russian and regime forces operate at times in…

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