BEIRUT, Lebanon – A suicide car bomb targeting US forces in northern Syria wounded at least two allied fighters Saturday, a monitor said, with the Islamic State group claiming the attack.
A jihadist “driving a car bomb” hit a convoy that included a US armored vehicle from the international anti-IS coalition and Kurdish fighters in the city of Manbij, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
The two wounded fighters were from the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the Britain-based monitor said.
“No US soldiers were injured or killed today,” coalition spokesman Sean Ryan told AFP.
The Islamic State (IS) group claimed the attack by an “explosive-laden vehicle” via its Amaq propaganda arm.
The attack is the third in the past two months targeting the US-led coalition and its allies in northern Syria.
On January 16, four Americans were among 19 people killed in a suicide attack in the city claimed by IS.
Manbij is a former IS stronghold that is now held by a military council affiliated to the SDF.
The city constitutes a major point of contention between Syria’s Kurdish minority, which maintains de facto autonomy in parts of northern and northeastern Syria, and neighboring Turkey.
The jihadist attacks followed US President Donald Trump’s announcement in December that he would withdraw American troops from Syria, as he declared IS had been defeated.
The White House later said around 200 American “peacekeeping” soldiers would remain in northern Syria.
The SDF is currently battling to wipe out the final scrap of IS territory close to Syria’s border with Iraq.
After a lightning offensive that saw it seize large swathes of Iraq and Syria in 2014, IS’s self-declared “caliphate” has crumbled under pressure from multiple offensives, but the jihadists remain able to launch deadly attacks.
Syria’s multi-fronted war has killed more than 360,000 people since it began in 2011 with President Bashar al-Assad’s regime bloodily suppressing protests.