US House of Representatives votes down Gaetz's American troop withdrawal from Syria bill

US House of Representatives votes down Gaetz's American troop withdrawal from Syria bill
A majority of lawmakers in the Congress' lower chamber rejected a draft resolution to pull US forces from Syria.
2 min read
09 March, 2023
The US has led an anti-IS coalition in Syria for years [Getty/archive]

A majority of lawmakers in the US House of Representatives rejected the withdrawal of American forces from Syria in a vote on Wednesday.

The draft resolution - submitted by Congressman Matt Gaetz from the Republican Party - was supported by 103 members of the House, while 321 rejected it.

Those who voted in favour of the draft resolution included 56 Democrats and 47 Republicans.

Addressing the House, Gaetz said he believed the US must bring its troops home from Syria.

"I do not believe what stands between a caliphate and not a caliphate are the 900 Americans who have been sent to this hellscape with no definition of victory, no clear objective, and purely existing as a vestige to the regime-change, failed foreign policies of multiple former presidents," he wrote on Twitter.

Washington leads an international coalition in war-torn Syria that helped defeat the Islamic State (IS) group in the east of the country.

The Kurdish-dominated Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and US-led coalition still conduct periodic raids and strikes targeting the group in Syria.

The Syrian regime considers the US presence an "occupation".

After losing their last territory to local Kurdish-led forces backed by the coalition in 2019, IS remnants in Syria mostly retreated to desert hideouts in the country's east and have waged a low-level insurgency since then.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley made an unannounced visit to a US base in Syria over the weekend to assess his forces' nearly eight-year mission there.

The Al-Tanf US military base, which sits along Syria’s borders with Iraq and Jordan, has repeatedly been targeted with drone attacks and Iran-backed militia attacks.

The conflict in Syria - which has seen direct military involvement from Russia, Iran and Turkey - is believed to have killed over half a million people and displaced more than half of Syria’s post-war population.