News / Middle East

    US Welcomes Saudi Offer to Send Troops to Syria

    FILE - Saudi troops stand at attention at their base in Yemen's southern port city of Aden, Sept. 28, 2015.
    FILE - Saudi troops stand at attention at their base in Yemen's southern port city of Aden, Sept. 28, 2015.

    The United States has welcomed a Saudi offer to deploy special forces to support a possible coalition ground operation inside Syria.

    In Washington, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said Monday that his country's willingness to send special forces to Syria is contingent on the U.S. leading the ground effort.

    "There is a discussion with regard to a ground force contingent, or a special forces contingent, to operate in Syria by this international U.S.-led coalition against ISIS, and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has expressed its readiness to provide special forces to such operations should they occur," he said, using an acronym for Islamic State.

    While he declined to discuss potential Saudi troop numbers, deployment dates or targets, Jubeir said Saudi forces would be part of an international coalition that "will operate the way it has operated in the past, as an international coalition, even when there is a ground force contingent in Syria.''

    Four months of Russian airstrikes have tipped momentum toward Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the nearly 5-year Syrian civil war in which at least 250,000 people have died and more than 10 million have fled their homes.

    U.S. President Barack Obama has resisted committing U.S. ground troops to the Syrian civil war, but has sought greater help from regional leaders in the Middle East in the fight against Islamic State.

    Saudi Arabia has so far focused its attention on another civil war in the region, the one in Yemen. A Saudi-led coalition is battling Iranian-backed Houthi rebels who captured the capital of Sana'a in January 2015.

    State Department reporter Pam Dockins and Pentagon reporter Carla Babbs contributed to this report.

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    Comment Sorting
    by: Igor from: Russia
    February 09, 2016 4:26 AM
    The US knows very well that those dictatorship such as Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Quatar...are supporting Suni extremists (in fact the ISIS) for along time but it continue to support such move in order to serve its purpose of overthrowing Assad government. Now Syria has Russia and Iran as their allies. I think Saudi Arabia's ambition of sending ground troops to Syria is a foolish move because Russia will have a very good reason for targerting and destroying those terrorist supporting troops with its advanced and unique weapons. The US and Western countries will not intervine because one one wish to face a nuclear war with Russia. Besides, taking part in the war in Syria will lead to the destruction of those Kingdoms.
    In Response

    by: Norman from: Toronto
    February 09, 2016 9:26 AM
    Igor from Putin-Russia (!) is naming other countries as dictatorships. Haha, good one.

    by: AHMED from: INDIA
    February 08, 2016 9:18 PM
    Saudi Arab will send its troops to help Daesh or IS. Do not think SA will send its troops to make life easy for Poor Syrians. SA aim to make as much as possible to problems for Syrians.
    If you see the history of SA, SA always Master in creating problems for Muslims. Few examples are Egypt, Libya, Yemen, Syria, Bahrain, Nigeria and Pakistan.
    SA proud of their oil income, now no more surplus funds for Terrorist or Human Killer. Oil price is now 30 dollar.

    by: Anonymous
    February 08, 2016 8:05 PM
    Saudis and the Turks want to go into Syria to PROTECT ISIS, not fight ISIS.

    by: logical spartan from: United States
    February 08, 2016 7:31 PM
    This is an ideal outcome, Saudi troops, US intelligence, stay away from Syrian troops and focus on ISIS.

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