The U.S.-led coalition has deployed heavy howitzers in its bases in northeast Syria, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) announced on March 10.
In an official statement, the Kurdish-led group said the U.S.-led coalition deployed the howitzers to defend the region as well as strength cooperation with its forces.
“The heavy howitzers were deployed to defend the base and our partners [the SDF] from any threat,” an official in the coalition told the SDF.
The coalition official added that the U.S remain committed to protect “its forces, partners as well as innocent people” in northeast Syria.
Additionally to the statement, the SDF shared a photo of a M777 155 mm towed howitzer, one of several deployed in northeast Syria apparently. The howitzer has an effective firing range of up to 40 km and can fire GPS-guided shells.
This was the second batch of heavy howitzers to be deployed by the U.S.-led coalition in northeast Syria in the last 30 days, according to the SDF.
By deploying such heavy weapons, the U.S.-led coalition is fortifying its bases which control key oil fields in northeast Syria. The coalition began tightening its grip of oil-rich areas in October 2019, after abandoning its ally, the SDF, in the face of a Turkish-led attack on northeastern Syria.