BEIRUT – A spokesman for the Syrian Democratic Forces denied on Monday that there had been fighting between his fighters and government troops in the town of al-Tabqa and its surrounding area in the southwest of al-Raqqa province.
The regime bombed the al-Tabqa area, where SDF forces are present, Ahmad al-Omar, a member of the SDF’s northern democratic brigade, told EFE by telephone.
Al-Omar said that as a result, the international coalition responded by dropping a Syrian army plane, but there were no clashes at any time.
The northern democratic brigade is deployed in al-Tabqa, which the SDF recovered from the Islamic State terror organization in early May.
On Sunday night, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported clashes between the SDF and forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the al-Resafa area, south of al-Tabqa.
These hostilities coincided with the shooting down of a Syrian air force plane by the United States-led international coalition that supports the SDF.
The coalition justified the attack by accusing Syrian authorities of having previously targeted the SDF near al-Tabqa.
However, the Syrian army said the plane was attacked by the coalition when it was carrying out a combat mission against the IS, and accused Washington of supporting terror and coordinating with the radicals.
SDF spokesman Gen. Talal Salu warned in a statement on Monday that his group will respond in a reciprocal manner if attacks on its positions by Syrian government troops continue.
The SDF began on June 6 the assault on al-Raqqa, considered the capital of the self-proclaimed caliphate declared by the IS in Syria and Iraq in 2014.