The Syrian intelligence have secured the defection of eight fighters from the U.S.-led coalition garrison in the area of al-Tanf, the Syria News TV revealed in a report on November 6.
The state-run news channel’s report included footage of the actuall extraction operation, which took place at night-time.
The defectors handed over two pick-up trucks armed with U.S.-made M240B machine guns and three U.S.-made M16 assault rifles to Syrian authorities. The weapons were supplied by the U.S.-led coalition.
The leader of the defectors told the news channel that they were ambushed by U.S. forces on their way out. However, they managed to escape without sustaining any losses.
The defectors are likely from the Revolutionary Commando Army (MaT) a small U.S.-backed group that’s tasked with guarding al-Tanf garrison as well as the nearby al-Rukban camp, where thousands of civilians are being held in poor conditions.
In April, 27 fighters defected from the MaT. The fighters run away to government areas taking with them loads of U.S.-supplied weapons.
The repeated defections of U.S.-backed fighters is a sign of low morale at al-Tnaf garrison. Recent reports revealed that some of the fighters based there are providing ISIS cells in central Syria with supplies and weapons in exchange for money.
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