Drone strike kills suspected ISIS member in northern Syria

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A drone strike in northern Syria killed a suspected member of the ISIS group on Monday, a war monitor and an AFP correspondent said.

It was not immediately clear who was behind the attack that came days after US forces said they had targeted ISIS officials in Syria in a series of raids.

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Two explosions hit near the Turkish-held border-town of Tal Abyad in northern Syria, residents and an AFP correspondent said.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said a drone strike had targeted a suspected member of the terrorist group.

The suspected terrorist was killed while on a motorbike, according to the monitor which relies on a wide network of sources inside Syria.

“I heard aircraft and then a first strike followed by a second one less than a minute later,” resident Ismail al-Barho told AFP.

“I came to the site of the strikes and found a charred body,” he said, adding that a civilian was also wounded.

Another resident identified the dead man as Ammar al-Yehya Ibn Ali, a 35-year-old Syrian who was known to have been a former member of ISIS.

The resident spoke on the condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals.

Monday’s strike came after the US Central Command (CENTCOM) said it carried out a raid in northeast Syria on Thursday, targeting an ISIS official known to facilitate the smuggling of weapons and fighters.

In a later statement the same day, it said it had launched another air strike that killed two senior ISIS members.

Washington first deployed troops in northeast Syria in 2014 as part of a coalition to combat the ISIS group.
When they lost the last territory the controlled after a military onslaught backed by the US-led coalition in March 2019, the remnants of ISIS in Syria mostly retreated into desert hideouts.

They have since used these hideouts to ambush Kurdish-led forces and Syrian government troops, while also continuing to mount attacks in Iraq.

In July, the Pentagon said it had killed Syria’s top ISIS terrorist in a drone strike in the north of the country.

CENTCOM said he had been “one of the top five” ISIS leaders.

July’s attack came five months after a nighttime US raid on the town of Atme, which led to the death of ISIS leader Abu Ibrahim al-Qurashi.

US officials said al-Qurashi, his wife, and two children all died when he detonated a bomb to avoid capture.

Read more: US military says it killed ISIS official in Syria, no civilian casualties

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