Americans and Russians have exchanged gunfire in Syria more than once
While not providing specific details, the U.S. special representative for Syria engagement confirmed that the U.S. and Russia have had several engagements in Syria apart from the February incident in which the U.S. conducted airstrikes on a group of Russian mercenaries and pro-Assad fighters trying to seize ground won from ISIS by U.S.-backed groups, killing as many as 200. “There have been various engagements,” the ambassador stated, “some involving exchange of fire, some not. Citing operational concerns, the ambassador did not elaborate further, saying only that “U.S. forces are legitimately in Syria, supporting local forces in the fight against Daesh…as appropriate – and this has occurred about a dozen times in one or another place in Syria – they exercise the right of self-defense when they feel threatened. That’s all we say on that.” Broadly, Syria has served as a proving ground for new technologies, tactics, and methods by both NATO and Russian forces, and the U.S. has encountered Russian jamming and other technologies during operations in the region, even when not in more kinetically violent conflict situations.