"We would like to have air cover, air support and a force on the ground to coordinate with us," Kobani told a small group of reporters who travelled with the U.S. military to an airbase at an undisclosed location in northeast Syria. Kobani said there was discussions about perhaps French and British troops supporting them in Syria. But he stressed he also wanted at least "a partial group of American forces," who now number more than 2,000 in Syria, to stay as well.
U.S. Army General Joseph Votel, head of Central Command, said after the talks with Kobani that he was still carrying out President Donald Trump's December order for a complete U.S. withdrawal of American forces. "We certainly understand what they would like us to do, but of course that's not the path we're on at this particular point," Votel told reporters.
Asked about any discussions on a continuing U.S. presence in Syria, Votel said: "So the discussion really isn't about U.S. forces staying here. We've looked at potentially what coalition (forces) might be able to do here." (Reporting by Phil Stewart; Editing by Alison Williams)