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.

 

Warring Syrians set for first face-to-face at Astana

Turkey moves closer to expanding Erdogan powers

IS demolishes more monuments in recaptured Palmyra

Bodies of firemen recovered from Tehran tower

Police, ruling party hit by attacks in Istanbul

Bomb kills 4 in refugee camp near Syrian border with Jordan

Egypt says political solution 'only way' for Libya ahead of talks

Turkey concedes including Assad in Syria talks

Netanyahu congratulates ‘friend’ Trump in tweet

Israel denounces Belgian plan to interrogate ex-minister

Denmark grants soldiers permission to fight IS in Syria

Car bomb near Benghazi mosque wounds 12

UN calls IS destruction of Palmyra relics ‘war crime’

Armed settlers rescued from angry Palestinian villagers

Petition filed for Israeli court to return body of Bedouin

29 Yemen rebels killed by Saudi-led air strikes

Iran losing hope of saving trapped firefighters

Algeria’s Islamist parties unite ahead of April elections

British worker dies on Qatar 2022 World Cup site

Search continues for trapped Iran firefighters

More than 40 jihadists killed in north Syria air strikes

Trump to be sworn in as 45th US president

Trump to retain envoy to anti-IS coalition

More than 20 firefighters feared dead in Tehran building collapse

Explosions in Gaza target Fatah member

UN expert tells Saudi to end ban on women driving

Desalination plant opens in Gaza to tackle water crisis

Syria’s Assad hopes rebels disarm after Astana talks

UN says 400,000 Syrian child refugees in Turkey not in school

Libya PM skips Davos to focus on electricity crisis

Greece, Cyprus insist peace deal must include Turkish withdrawal

Mistura to lead UN delegation at Astana Syria talks

Turkey slams French satire song about Istanbul attack

Saudi minister says kingdom to become ‘softer’ after reforms

Bahrain lifts ban on electronic Al-Wasat newspaper

Arab Israelis strike in protest over house demolitions

Iran sees Syria talks as opportunity to gain influence

Kuwait upholds sentence for three royals for insulting judges

Tunisia facing mounting calls against jail-for-joint law

Iran's oldest high-rise building on fire collapses

IMF says Egypt on track for next aid tranche

Bahrain police disperse Shiite protesters

Key Syria rebel group opts out of Astana peace talks

Moroccan Sufi ‘living master’ dies at 95

France says Iraqi jihadist among 2015 stadium bombers