Denmark to deploy troops to Northern Syria

The Danish government will be sending troops to Northern Syria to support the international coalition fighting the Islamic State (ISIS), announced Pentagon Spokesperson Jonathan R. Hoffman on Friday.

“The United States welcomes the announcement by the Danish Government to make a military deployment to Syria in support of Operation Inherent Resolve and to continue to share the burden and responsibilities of this important mission,” said Hoffman.

According to the Pentagon spokesperson, Denmark will be working with the residual U.S. forces and the Syrian Defence Forces (SDF), a majority-Kurdish military structure allied with the U.S. and the Global Coalition Against ISIS, in north-eastern Syria.

“This deployment demonstrates Denmark’s continued commitment (...) to ensure ISIS cannot re-emerge,” said Hoffman.

Denmark must lift its share of the burden in NATO, said Denmark’s Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod on Friday.

Danish Minister of Defence Trine Bramsen said she is proud that the country will be contributing to peace and stability in one of the world’s hotspots.

Turkey has long considered the SDF to be a terrorist organisation and the Syrian wing of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which has been in conflict with the country for over three decades. The European Union (EU) or the U.S. also include the PKK on their list of terrorist organisations, but consider the SDF to be a separate entity.

Turkey is also currently fighting the biggest constituent in the SDF, the People’s Protection Units (YPG) in the north-western Syrian province of Afrin, and considering a wider-spread operation in northern Syria, which led to high tensions with the United States as plans include Manbij, where U.S: troops are stationed.