Three one-way attack drones targeted the United States' al-Tanf garrison in southern Syria on Friday morning, injuring two members of a US-backed Syrian militia, the US military said.
Two of the incoming drones were shot down by the US-led coalition, while a third struck the compound at al-Tanf, injuring two members of the Syrian Free Army militia. The injured fighters were given medical attention, US Central Command said in a statement.
No US troops were hurt in the attack on the base, which houses American forces and members of the militia near the country’s remote desert border with Jordan and Iraq.
"Attacks of this kind are unacceptable — they place our troops and our partners at risk and jeopardize the fight against ISIS," CENTCOM spokesperson Col. Joe Buccino said in a statement.
Why it matters: Al-Tanf occupies a key crossing on the Baghdad-Damascus highway, thought to be coveted by pro-Syrian regime militias backed by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.
This one is at least the third drone attack on the base reported by the US military over the past two years. A previous strike last August caused no injuries, but an attack involving five drones in October 2021 damaged barracks and personnel facilities, though US troops were relocated from the area ahead of the strike due to prior intelligence. The Pentagon blamed both of the strikes on Iran-backed forces.
No US troops were hurt in Iran-backed attacks in Syria over the past year, the Pentagon’s top Middle East policy official Dana Stroul said last week.