Tuesday, February 20, 2018
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General: Syrian air defense complicates US options
Commander says robust air defense in Syria complicates US options for aiding rebels
By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) ' The top U.S. commander in the Middle East says the advanced air defense weapons Russia has provided to Syria's regime would make it difficult to establish a no-fly zone there as part of an effort to help the rebellion.

Marine Gen. James Mattis, head of U.S. Central Command, declined to reveal any military options the Pentagon has developed for action against the regime. But he told the Senate Armed Services Committee Tuesday that it would take a significant military commitment to create even safe havens in Syria where aid could be delivered, as Sen. John McCain suggested Monday.

Senators were pressing for options to stem the brutal offensive against the Syrian people by President Bashar Assad's regime.

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