US commandos heading into Syria

UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura, left, US Secretary of State John Kerry, second left, and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, third right, meet with foreign ministers for talks on Syria at a hotel in Vienna, Austria, Friday, Oct. 30, 2015. Kerry is acknowledging that progress will be difficult as he launches a marathon day of talks aimed at ending the Syrian War but is expressing some hope of headway. With 19 foreign ministers and other senior dignitaries attending, participants say the fact that the talks are happening despite deep divisions among key players are in themselves a sign of success. (Brendan Smialowski/Pool Photo via AP)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senior U.S. officials say a small number of U.S. special operations forces will be deployed to northern Syria to work with local ground forces in the fight against Islamic State militants.

The deployment marks the first time U.S. troops will be working openly on the ground in Syria.

U.S. officials say President Barack Obama ordered the deployment of fewer than 50 commandos to help coalition forces coordinate with the local troops.

One official also says the U.S. will be sending additional aircraft, including F-15 fighters and A-10s to the Incirlik air base in Turkey.

The officials were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly so spoke on condition of anonymity.

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