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Pentagon reports troop surge in Middle East

Newly released Pentagon figures show a surge in US troops deployed across the Middle East this summer.
A U.S. fighter stands near a military vehicle, north of Raqqa city, Syria November 6, 2016. REUTERS/Rodi Said - S1AEULHHBDAA

The number of US soldiers and civilian support staff deployed to Syria and the broader Middle East surged by more than 30% over the summer, according to Pentagon figures.

A quarterly personnel report released late last week indicates that 54,325 US troops, reservists and civilians were stationed in the Middle East and North Africa during the three-month period that ended Sept. 30 — about 33% more than during the first two quarters of 2017. The increase holds true for combat zones such as Syria and Iraq as well as neighboring countries that host US military bases.

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