"However, the United States will not hesitate to use necessary and proportionate force to defend U.S., coalition or partner forces, as we have clearly demonstrated in past instances", Robertson said.
The Pentagon sent more than 100 U.S. Marines to reinforce a coalition outpost in southern Syria after a threatened attack from Russian Federation, U.S. officials said.
The United States does not seek to engage in battle with the Syrian government and those who supports him.
The report further underlined that Moscow's warning has sharply raised United States commanders' concerns that American troops would be at risk if a Russian attack goes forward, prompting Washington to warn Moscow "not to challenge the United States military presence".
U.S. and anti-Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) coalition forces kicked off a military exercise Friday near a garrison in southeastern Syria, U.S. Central Command announced.
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Russian and Iranian military forces are in Syria at the official request of the Syrian government, whereas American troops have illegally infiltrated into the country in an overt campaign to train and support terrorists bent of destabilizing the nation and overthrowing its government. The deconfliction zone is a 34-mile (55-kilometer) radius around the base that the US has unilaterally enforced even though it is not internationally recognized.
Russian Federation is Assad's top global backer; its support, including aircraft, special forces and mercenaries, enabled his military to reverse the course of his country's seven-year civil war, which has killed hundreds of thousands of people and displaced millions.
So far, no buildup of Russian ground forces has been observed in recent days, officials said.
One of the captive said they were trained by USA instructors and received weapons and ammunition from the U.S. base.
His response came after suspected Russian planes on Tuesday carried out airstrikes in the rebel-held targets in Idlib province.
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The use of the wording "precision strikes" in a written note to the US sparked alarm with US commanders that the Russians are signaling their intent to strike with aircraft firing precision weapons, or missiles launched from Russian ships in the Mediterranean, US defense officials tell CNN.
That was followed by a letter sent Thursday to Lt. Gen. Paul E. Funk II, the commander of USA forces in Syria, warning that Russian Federation planned to carry out "precision strikes" near Tanf against Islamic State fighters, a warning that prompted Funk to speed up plans to dispatch additional troops to the base. But U.S. officials have maintained the communications line did not fail in that instance because the incident did not involve Russian government forces.
"President Bashar al-Assad of Syria must not recklessly attack Idlib Province", Trump said.
There is concern the Russians could use aircraft or their naval warships in the eastern Mediterranean to launch a missile attack against what they say are militants, sparking a confrontation that could inadvertently draw in United States forces if Russian targeting is not precise. The US has long demanded everyone stay away from this base, except rebels of course.
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