U.S.-led coalition helps build new Syrian force

<p style="text-align: left;">The U.S.-led coalition is working with its Syrian militia allies to set up a new border force of 30,000 personnel, the coalition said on Sunday.

A senior Turkish official told Reuters the U.S. training of the new &ldquo;Border Security Force&rdquo; is the reason that the U.S. charge d&lsquo;affaires was summoned in Ankara on Wednesday. The official did not elaborate.

The force, whose inaugural class is currently being trained, will be deployed at the borders of the area controlled by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) - an alliance of militias in northern and eastern Syria dominated by the Kurdish YPG.

In an email to Reuters, the coalition&rsquo;s Public Affairs Office confirmed details of the new force reported by The Defense Post. About half the force will be SDF veterans, and recruiting for the other half is underway, the coalition&rsquo;s Public Affairs Office said.

The force will deploy along the border with Turkey to the north, the Iraqi border to the southeast, and along the Euphrates River Valley.

The coalition said the BSF would operate under SDF command and around 230 individuals were currently undergoing training in its inaugural class.

&rdquo;Efforts are taken to ensure individuals serve in areas close to their homes. Therefore, the ethnic composition of the force will be relative to the areas in which they serve.

&ldquo;More Kurds will serve in the areas in northern Syria. More Arabs will serve in areas along the Euphrates River Valley and along the border with Iraq to the south,&rdquo; the coalition&rsquo;s Public Affairs Office said.

&ldquo;The base of the new force is essentially a realignment of approximately 15,000 members of the SDF to a new mission in the Border Security Force as their actions against ISIS draw to a close,&rdquo; it said.

&ldquo;They will be providing border security through professionally securing checkpoints and conducting counter-IED operations,&rdquo; it said, adding that coalition and SDF forces were still engaging Islamic State pockets in Deir al-Zor province.

Reporter&rsquo;s code: 50101

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