The head of the US-backed Maghawir al-Thawra group in Syria, Muhanad al Talaa told Reuters that American troops’ presence at the al-Tanf camp remains at the same level so far, despite the recent announcement about the US contingent’s withdrawal from Syria.
“American troops plan to withdraw completely from Syria but I don’t have details and things are as they are up until this moment”, he said.
Earlier, Muhanad al Talaa told BuzzFeed that US troops were preparing to leave the al-Tanf base, whose presence there have been criticised by Russia.
The chief of the Russian General Staff announced on 5 December that Moscow had offered to establish a joint Russian-US control over the zone instead.
The al-Tanf garrison is situated at a strategic point close to Syria’s borders with Jordan and Iraq, on a crossroads with the Baghdad-Damascus highway.
This is the only point of major US troop presence in Syria’s south with the rest of the American troops located in the north along with Kurdish forces.
Damascus earlier slammed the US presence in al-Tanf as illegal and demanded Washington withdraw its troops from there, since they were not invited by the Syrian authorities and do not have a UN mandate.
The US announced that is was withdrawing its forces from Syria on 19 December. US President Donald Trump noted that since defeating Daesh* was the only goal of US military, the troops must now return home since the terrorists had been eliminated.