Air strike kills 28 civilians in Syria’s Deir Ezzor: monitor

Agence France-Presse | Published: 13:21, Jul 13,2018


Syrian government forces walk through a road in a northeastern district of Deir Ezzor after retaking the city from Deash militants in this on November 5, 2017. — AFP photo

An air strike has killed 28 civilians in one of the last holdouts of the Islamic State group in Syria’s eastern province of Deir Ezzor, a monitor said on Friday.

The raid late Thursday hit a ‘gathering of civilians’ at an ice factory near the village of Al-Soussa near the Iraqi border, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitor said.

It was not immediately clear if the strike was carried out by an Iraqi plane or by one of the US-led coalition fighting IS, the monitor said.

Iraqi warplanes have recently carried out strikes in eastern Syria, while coalition aircraft have been supporting Kurdish-led fighters battling the jihadists.

State news agency SANA reported the strike late Thursday, saying more than 30 civilians were killed and accusing the US-led coalition.

The coalition was not immediately available for comment.

IS fighters swept across Syria and Iraq in 2014, declaring a cross-border ‘caliphate’ in areas they controlled.

They have since lost most of that territory to various offensives, but still retain pockets in Syria including in Deir Ezzor.

Al-Soussa lies to the east of the Euphrates River, which runs diagonally through Deir Ezzor, splitting the province in half.

Russia-backed regime forces have pushed back the jihadists on the western side of the Euphrates, while the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces alliance have battled them to its east.

More about:

Want stories like this in your inbox?

Sign up to exclusive daily email