Skip to main content

Pentagon denies US military to cut Iran’s land route into Syria

The top commander of US-led coalition forces in Iraq and Syria denied his forces are preparing to cut the road from al-Qaim to Albukamal, pushing back on recent reports in Arabic-language media.
Members of the Syrian security forces gather on the Syrian side of the border-crossing between Albu Kamal in Syria and Al-Qaim in Iraq, on September 30, 2019, after the crossing re-opened today after it was seized by the Islamic State (IS) group jihadists in 2014. (Photo by AFP) (Photo by -/AFP via Getty Images)

The Pentagon on Thursday reiterated its denial that US forces fighting the Islamic State have moved to cut off Iran-backed militias' access to a key border crossing between Iraq and Syria.

Pentagon Press Secretary US Air Force Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder told journalists that recent news reports in Arabic-language media alleging such were "false" and that US forces are not involved in security on the Iraqi border.

"I'm not tracking any significant shift in forces as it pertains to the defeat ISIS mission in Syria," Ryder said in response to a question by Al-Monitor on Thursday.

"We don't provide border security. That's the role of the Iraqi government," he continued.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.