U.S. is in Syria until Iranian ‘commanded forces’ leave

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The United States is laying the groundwork for a long-term commitment to eastern Syria that will include 'stabilization' after the defeat of Islamic State and also the demand that “Iranian-commanded forces” leave Syria before the US withdraws. Over the last six months, this policy has increasingly crystalized. It was finally spelled out by US special representative for Syria engagement James Jeffrey at the end of last week.

Kremlin accuses U.S. of drone attack on Russian air base in Syria

Russia’s deputy defense minister Aleksandr Fomin accused a US airplane of manually controlling 13 drones that attempted to attack Russia’s Khmeimim air base in Syria. The surprising allegations were made at a plenary session of the Beijing Xiangshan Forum on Thursday. A Russian diplomatic source elaborated on the comments, alleging that some Syrian militants in Idlib are being used by the US to create instability in northern Syria.

Russia supports Syria, Iran ramps up support to Hezbollah

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Iran reportedly delivered GPS components to Hezbollah in Lebanon that will allow the group to transform rudimentary projectiles into precision-guided missiles, thereby increasing the threat to Israel. Western intelligence services believe Tehran has shifted its strategy by increasingly shipping weaponry directly to its proxy in Beirut, with a view to evading Israeli air strikes.