Advertisement

More than 100 pro-Assad forces killed in thwarted attack: U.S. official

From Reuters - February 8, 2018

WASHINGTON/BEIRUT (Reuters) - More than 100 fighters aligned with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad were killed overnight when U.S. coalition and coalition-backed local forces repelled their attack in eastern Syria, a U.S. official said on Thursday.

The heavy death toll underscored the large size of the attack, which the U.S. official said included about 500 opposing forces, backed by artillery, tanks, multiple-launch rocket systems and mortars. The official spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity.

In reports that appeared to confirm the officials comments, Syrian state media said the U.S.-led coalition against Islamic State had bombed pro-government forces east of the Euphrates river in Deir al-Zor province. One of the state TV outlets reported dozens of dead and wounded.

No American troops were killed or wounded in the incident,officials said.

Some U.S. troops had been embedded at the time with Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), whose headquarters in Syrias Deir al-Zor province had been a target of the attack.

One SDF fighter was wounded, the official said.

We suspect Syrian pro-regime forces were attempting to seize terrain SDF had liberated from Daesh in September 2017, the official said.

The forces were likely seeking to seize oilfields in Khusham that had been a major source of revenue for Daesh from 2014 to 2017.

Advertisement

Continue reading at Reuters »