US-Backed Syrian Kurds, Iraqi Army Coordinate at Border

US Says Coordination Vital to Combating ISIS Remnants

With the offensive against ISIS forces in Deir Ezzor Province having left substantial parts of the Syrian side of the Iraqi border under the control of the Kurdish YPG, YPG officials are reporting increasing coordination with the Iraqi government on border security.

“The two sides decided to form a joint coordination center to guarantee the security of the border,” one statement noted. There is no word if similar coordination is happening further south, where the Syrian government controls the border.

US officials presented this as beneficial, saying it was necessary to prevent the movement of ISIS remnants back and forth, as well as to prevent ISIS leaders from “fleeing the battlefield.”

The YPG already had a common border with Iraq further north in Hasakeh Province, but now controls more important areas near the Euphrates River. It’s unclear how much ISIS force remains in this immediate vicinity, though the large amount of empty desert between Iraq and Syria’s border means covert crossings are likely still possible.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.