First Published: 2017-01-11

Two IS operatives killed in commando raid in Syria
US defense official says senior Islamic State operative Abu Anas al-Iraqi killed in raid in province of Deir Ezzor on Sunday.
Middle East Online

WASHINGTON - A team of US-led commandos killed two Islamic State group operatives in Syria in a raid over the weekend, a US defense official confirmed Tuesday.

The operation in the eastern province of Deir Ezzor on Sunday drew significant international attention after the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an independent monitor, said that 25 jihadists had been killed.

The defense official said that only two Islamic State operatives died, including Abu Anas al-Iraqi, a "senior operative."

US television network ABC News quoted a counterterrorism official as saying he was a "top" IS leader.

The defense official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the two men had been killed in a vehicle on an isolated highway about 50 kilometers (30 miles) from the city of Deir Ezzor.

Deir Ezzor is Syria's second-biggest province after Homs. Since early 2015, jihadists have besieged the provincial capital, also called Deir Ezzor, home to some 200,000 people.

The official said the special operations raid was led by US forces, but commandos from other nations in the anti-IS coalition were present too.

According to ABC News, the men in the vehicle had opened fire at helicopters that were tailing it.

The choppers fired back, killing the vehicle's occupants, ABC said.

 

US says Iran supplied ballistic missile to Yemen rebels

UN 'appalled' at mass execution of jihadists in Iraq

Palestinians call for protests against Pence Jerusalem visit

Over half Syrian refugees in Lebanon live in 'extreme poverty'

Palestinian activist killed in Gaza protests

Palestinian billionaire detained in Saudi Arabia

Egypt opens Rafah crossing for four days

Turkey court releases 7 suspects in New Year attack trial

Foreign fighters a worry as IS struggles to survive

Palestinians killed in continuing protests over Jerusalem occupation

Bourita: Extraordinary meeting between ECOWAS, Morocco to be held beginning of 2018

Saudi-led air strikes, clashes as Yemen forces battle rebels

Sahel force funding shows terrorism fight is Saudi 'priority'

Iraq's Sistani says Hashed should be under government control

Middle-class Egypt adapts as costs soar

Somalia's budget meets IMF terms

Israel PM questioned in graft probe

Lebanon approves bid for oil, gas exploration

US to present 'irrefutable evidence' of Iran violations

Istanbul 'to remove Gulen links' from street names

Iraq hangs 38 jihadists

Pence to visit Middle East despite controversy

Hamas chief calls for continued Jerusalem protests

EU to repatriate 15,000 migrants from Libya in two months

Syria Kurds fear US ally will desert them after IS defeat

Israeli drugmaker Teva to cut 14,000 jobs over two years

Turkey rescues 51 migrants stranded on rocks

Saudi, UAE hold talks with Yemen Islamists

18 killed after bomber strikes Mogadishu police academy

Israeli air strikes target Hamas military facilities

US-led air strikes kill 23 civilians in Syria

Israel union calls nationwide strike over pharmaceutical giant job cuts

UN envoy urges Putin to press Assad for elections

Yemen's Huthi rebels release pro-Saleh media staff

Israel intelligence minister invites Saudi prince to visit

Saudi-led strikes kill 30 in rebel-run Yemen prison

Saudi king says Palestinians have 'right' to Jerusalem

Erdogan urges world to recognise Jerusalem as Palestinian capital

Saudi King says determined to confront corruption

South Sudan needs $1.7 billion humanitarian aid in 2018

UAE oil giant floats 10 percent of retail arm to strong interest

US skeptical about Putin's declaration of military victory in Syria

Growing concern about rise of far-right in Austria

Saudi, UAE seeks to help West Africa fight terrorism

Somali journalist dies after Mogadishu bombing