BEIRUT, LEBANON (12:15 P.M.) – Units of the Irish Defence Forces have been present in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights (a Syrian territory) since April of this year as part of an overseas deployment tour to monitor supposed United Nations (UN) ceasefire zones throughout the region.

According to sources, the contingent of Irish ground troops which have been on deployment for the last five months belong to the 55th Infantry Group.

The deployment is reported to be 6 months long and will end in October at which time the 55th Infantry Group will either rotate with another Irish formation or Irish forces will pull-out completely for the time being.

Irish forces are currently present in occupied Syria under the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) framework, overseeing the Israeli-occupied Golan frontier with areas currently held by anti-government militant groups.

Despite their purpose as a peacekeeping mission, UN-backed forces have done virtually nothing – historically or currently – to reduce violence in southwestern Syria. Most of the achievement in this regard has been the result of Russian diplomatic efforts with other powers involved in the Syrian War (namely the United States and Jordan) aimed at enticing both Damascus government-led forces and militant groups to disengage from one another.

Andrew Illingworth | AMN
Andrew Illingworth | AMN
Andrew Illingworth | AMN
Andrew Illingworth | AMN
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