Multiple US Troops Injured in Clash with Russian Forces: Report

United States and Russian troops collided — literally — in eastern Syria this week, according to multiple reports.
A draft dispatch from U.S. Central Command said that “a Russian vehicle intentionally rammed a coalition vehicle, and that four U.S. troops were injured. The Russian vehicles unsafely pursued U.S. forces, according to the statement,” Politico reported.
Initial reports said four American troops suffered “concussion-like” injuries, according to Politico and CNN, which cited an anonymous U.S. official.
Video footage of what appeared to be the incident was posted on social media:

The video reportedly shows a Russian military helicopter flying low in a tactic often used to break up ground forces.
“National Security Council spokesperson John Ullyot confirmed parts of the encounter in a statement, but did not say the injuries involved U.S. troops,” according to Politico.
“The incident occurred around 10 a.m. Syria time on Wednesday, when a routine security patrol encountered Russian troops near Dayrick in northeast Syria, Ullyot said.
“A Russian vehicle struck a coalition vehicle, injuring its crew, he said, adding that the coalition patrol then left the area ‘to de-escalate the situation.'”
Ullyot slammed Russia in his statement.
“Unsafe and unprofessional actions like this represent a breach of de-confliction protocols, committed to by the United States and Russia in December 2019,” he said. 
“The Coalition and the United States do not seek escalation with any national military forces, but U.S. forces always retain the inherent right and obligation to defend themselves from hostile acts.”
Despite multiple close calls between U.S. and Russian military personnel in Syria, “this is believed to be the first time US troops have been injured in an encounter with Russian forces,” according to CNN.
Politico, however, reported that at least since June, Russian troops have been pushing into areas controlled by American forces in “what officials say is a deliberate campaign to squeeze the U.S. military out of the region.”
The collision between troops took place in a security zone regularly patrolled by the U.S. and the Syrian Democratic Forces, a U.S. official told CNN.
Defense Secretary Mark Esper spoke with Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu last week to discuss “ways of mutual trust and transparency enforcement — in order to prevent accidents occurring during both countries’ military activity,” the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement.
The Russian statement said that “the talk was held upon the U.S. initiative.”
There are currently about 500 U.S. troops in Syria, according to Reuters.
The U.S. has said its forces are in the region to seek and destroy remnants of the Islamic State group that are still in existence.
Russia, which backs the Syrian government in Syria’s long civil war, opposes the presence of the Americans.
Multiple US Troops Injured in Clash with Russian Forces: Report Multiple US Troops Injured in Clash with Russian Forces: Report Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 09:51 Rating: 5

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