Anadolu Agency has reported that the United States of America has deployed the HIMARS missile system to its forces in Syria in order to defend against potential attacks from Iranian militias in the region.
According to sources from the Turkish agency, the US Army recently dispatched the HIMARS system to its stationed forces near the oil fields in the governorate of Deir-ez-Zor, located in northeastern Syria. The system was specifically sent to US bases in the Omar oil fields and Conoco gas fields.
These sources further explained that the system’s deployment aims to counter possible attacks and shelling by Iran-affiliated groups situated on the opposite bank of the Euphrates River, which passes through the center of Deir-ez-Zor.
In addition, the report by Anadolu highlighted that on May 16, the US Army conducted training for members of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) on unidentified model tanks and American-made “TOW” anti-tank weaponry.
There have been instances of Iranian militias targeting US forces and bases in Syria using armed drones, with the most recent attack occurring on March 23. Rockets struck the al-Omar and Conoco bases, resulting in the death and injury of six US personnel.
Towards the end of March, the Pentagon announced the reinforcement of its military presence in the Middle East following a series of attacks on US forces in Syria, which were attributed to armed militias affiliated with Iran.
According to Pentagon spokesman Phil Ventura, the United States remains committed to supporting the mission to defeat ISIS in Syria alongside the international coalition. He emphasized their readiness to respond to various emergencies in the Middle East if necessary.
Since the defeat of the Islamic State in March 2019, the United States has reduced its military presence in northeastern Syria to approximately 900 soldiers. These forces are primarily located in areas controlled by the SDF in Hassakeh, Raqqa, and Deir-ez-Zor. The focus of their tasks has shifted from combat support to logistical support, training, and other forms of assistance for counterterrorism operations.
The Hassakeh governorate currently hosts over seven US military bases and centers, with the largest ones situated in the countryside of Rmeilan and the city of al-Shadadi. Additionally, US military bases can be found on the outskirts of Deir-ez-Zor. The al-Tanf base in southeastern Syria has also been targeted multiple times by Iranian-backed militias using drones and missiles.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.