Syria & Lebanon

Russia and US clash in Syria. Troops injured

Russian and US military vehicles collided near Dayrick in north-east Syria.

The video of the incident was broadcast by a Russian nationalist website The video shows Russian military vehicle in a desert convoy ramming a US armoured car, as a Russian helicopter flies low overhead.

The governments blamed each other for the collusion.

The Russian defence ministry said it had given the US military prior warning that it would be patrolling in the area.

“Despite that, in violation of existing agreements, the US armed forces soldiers tried to block the Russian patrol,” said a ministry statement.

“In response to that, the Russian military police took necessary measures to prevent an incident and to carry on fulfilling the mission they had been given.”

The White House National Security Council (NSC) said a Russian vehicle had struck a US mine-resistant all-terrain vehicle, “causing injuries to the vehicle’s crew”.

NSC spokesperson John Ullyot told the incident had occurred at about 10:00 local time on Tuesday, when a routine security patrol encountered Russian troops.

Condemning the Russian military for colliding with a US vehicle, he said the coalition patrol had then left the area “to de-escalate the situation”.

“Unsafe and unprofessional actions like this represent a breach of de-confliction protocols, committed to by the United States and Russia in December 2019,” Mr Ullyot said.

The Russians support Assad regime forces while the Americans took a side of local Kurdish fighters, in a civil war that has convulsed the country since 2011.

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