The 22 soldiers who were injured in a helicopter crash in northeast Syria on Sunday were part of the army’s top-secret Delta Force commando unit, which has previously carried out kill-or-capture raids against Islamic State militants in that part of the country, three senior military officials said on Tuesday.
The Pentagon’s Central Command, which oversees operations in the Middle East and South Asia, said in a brief statement late Monday that a “helicopter crash” in northeastern Syria injured nearly two dozens of soldiers. The statement said 10 of the soldiers were evacuated to hospitals outside the region and an investigation is ongoing.
The three military officials, speaking on condition of anonymity due to the ongoing investigation, said on Tuesday that an MH-47 Chinook helicopter carrying the commandos went down in good weather and without suffering any harm. hostile fire.
Sabrina Singh, a Pentagon spokeswoman, said later Tuesday that the Chinook “had a problem with a rotor that caused it to crash into a hard landing on takeoff.”
The 10 most seriously injured soldiers were airlifted to a US medical hospital in Germany, but none of their injuries were life-threatening, the three officials said.
More than 900 American soldiers and several hundred other contractors are based in Syria. Troops are working with Kurdish fighters to prevent a resurgence of Islamic State, which was defeated as a self-proclaimed caliphate in 2019 after five years of devastation in Iraq and Syria.
In Marchan American contractor was killed and at least six other Americans were injured when Iran-backed militias launched a volley of rocket and drone attacks on coalition bases.