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Pentagon downplays strike targeting Syrian Kurdish leader, US troops

The Biden administration has avoided attributing the attack, though America's Kurdish partners in the fight against the Islamic State accused Turkey of responsibility.
Pentagon Ryder

The Pentagon on Thursday sought to downplay a drone strike last week that landed near a convoy containing US troops and the top commander of Syria’s Kurdish-led forces in the fight against the Islamic State (IS).

“On April 7, a convoy including US personnel was fired upon while in transit within the Iraqi Kurdistan region in the area near Sulaymaniyah,” Pentagon press secretary Brig. Gen. Patrick S. Ryder confirmed during a press briefing.

In his first comments from the podium on the incident since it occurred, Ryder told journalists the strike “was not a near miss” and that it “struck more than 100 meters from the convoy.”

The State Department on Monday confirmed the incident after The Wall Street Journal and Al-Monitor reported that US troops were in convoy with Syrian Kurdish commander Mazlum Kobane when the strike occurred.

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