Twelve Killed in Airstrike on pro-Iranian Militia in Syria, War Monitor Reports

Iraqis and Afghans among dead in attack on major base near Deir Ezzor that received reinforcements three days ago, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reports

Jack Khoury
Jack Khoury
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File photo: A supporter of the Syrian military looks on after a regime airstrike in Deir Ezzor, July 26, 2018.
File photo: A supporter of the Syrian military looks on after a regime airstrike in Deir Ezzor, July 26, 2018.Credit: STRINGER / AFP
Jack Khoury
Jack Khoury

At least twelve members of an Iran-backed militia were killed in an airstrike on a base in eastern Syria overnight Sunday, a Syrian war monitor reported. They did not say who was responsible for the strike.

Eight missiles launched by unmanned aerial vehicles hit the Mezeileh base, near Deir Ezzor, killing troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, the report by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. According to their information, the targeted base had received logistical and personnel reinforcements from other Iran-backed forces three days prior.

There had been no comments from Syrian state news agencies or media channels inside Syria, but this kind of operation has previously been attributed to Israel.

Last week, nine were people were killed in airstrikes the northern province of Hama, four of them Syrians. Military installations were also heavily damaged

The Assad regime in Damascus has accused Israel of carrying out at least seven airstrikes in the past two months alone, believed to have targeted Iranian and proxy interests.

Last month, Syrian state media said air defenses had thwarted a missile attack on a research center and a military base attributed to Israel in the northern province of Aleppo.

A regional intelligence source said at the time that Israel was stepping up raids in Syria at a time when international attention was pulled from the region, including Syria, by the coronavirus pandemic.

Western intelligence sources say Iranian-backed militias have long been entrenched in Aleppo province, where they have bases and a command center, part of a growing presence across government-controlled Syria.

Israel has acknowledged in recent years it has conducted many raids inside Syria since the start of the civil war in that country in 2011, where it sees Iran's presence as a strategic threat.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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