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The New Arab

Five fighters killed as unidentified warplanes strike Iranian militias in eastern Syria

Aircraft from several countries are in the skies over Syria [Getty]

Date of publication: 8 December, 2019

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Iranian militia positions in Deir az-Zour province were struck by unidentified warplanes on Sunday, killing five fighters, as coalition forces made a landing in a nearby SDF-held area.
Warplanes of unknown origin hit positions belonging to Iranian militias in Deir az-Zour province in eastern Syria on Sunday.

The local news network Deir Ezzor 24 reported the planes bombed several positions belonging to the Iranian Revolutionary Guard (IRG) around Albukamal on the Syrian-Iraqi border in eastern Deir az-Zour province.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that five non-Syrian fighters were killed.

According to the Observatory, 10 Iraqi fighters were killed in September in airstrikes of unknown origin in the same area.

At the start of that month, air raids killed 18 pro-Iran fighters, the monitor reported.

An American official said at the time that Israel was responsible but there was no confirmation from the Israeli government.

Iran is a key backer of the Assad regime in Syria and its militias, which include fighters from Iraq and Afghanistan, have fought alongside the regime since the early days of the conflict.

Read more: Iran controls the ground, Israel dominates the skies in Syria

There were no reports regarding casualties or the nature of the positions bombed.

The bombing happened as US-led coalition forces landed in Deir az-Zour province with the assistance of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), who control part of the province.

Three days ago, Hamdan airport, which is west of Albukamal and serves as a base for the IRGC, was bombed by coalition forces.

Iranian-backed militias are present around the cities of Albukamal and Mayadin and have previously been targeted by the international anti-IS coalition as well as Israel.

Israel has also targeted Iranian-backed militias in neighbouring Iraq.

The Syrian conflict broke out in 2011 following the brutal suppression of peaceful protests by the Assad regime.



Agencies contributed to this report.


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