US official says troop withdrawal from Syria has started

After days of back and forth over US President Donald Trump’s decision to pullout American troops from Syria, a US military official said Friday the process of withdrawal has begun, declining to comment on specific timetables or movements. Col Sean Ryan, spokesman for the US-led coalition fighting the Islamic State group, said “the process of our deliberate withdrawal from Syria” has started. “Out of concern for operational security, we will not discuss specific timelines, locations or troops movements,” the Baghdad-based official said in a statement emailed to The Associated Press.
There were no other details, and it was not immediately clear how many vehicles or whether any troop units had withdrawn.The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which monitors the conflict in Syria through a network of activists on the ground, said the withdrawal began Thursday night. It said a convoy of about 10 armored vehicles, in addition to some trucks, pulled out from Syria’s northeastern town of Rmeilan into Iraq.