WASHINGTON — According to Kurdish activists in northern Syria, U.S. special operations forces were recently dispatched to the Kurdish-controlled city of Tal Abyad, near the Syria-Turkey border, as tensions flare in the fight against ISIS.
Officials in Baghdad would not confirm or deny the reports, citing operational security.
“Coalition special forces advise, assist and accompany partner forces wherever they are needed to defeat ISIS in Syria,” said a spokesperson at U.S. Central Command.
Over the past week, the Turkish military has steadily built up forces in northern Syria outside of the district of Afrin, which has been controlled by the Kurdish People’s Protection Units, or YPG — a group Ankara calls a terrorist organization.
According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and a spokesperson for the YPG, there has been shelling along the Syria-Turkey border over the past five days by Turkey and its Free Syrian Army proxy force.
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