Iraq Military: Warplanes kill 45 IS members in Syria, including Baghdadi’s ‘personal courier’
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Iraqi warplanes continue to target Islamic State (IS) positions inside neighboring Syria with recent air raids killing 45 members of the extremist group, the military said on Saturday.
Iraqi F-16 fighter jets bombed three houses belonging to IS on Friday, connected by a trench in the town of Hajin along the Syria-Iraq border, a military statement revealed. It added that senior IS leaders were congregating there.
The airstrikes killed high profile members such as the group’s “deputy war minister,” one of its “media emirs,” it’s leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s personal courier, and its chief of police, the statement said.
Since IS’ military defeat in Iraq, Baghdad has begun conducting operations inside Syrian territory along its western border.
“Iraqi F-16 jets carried out a successful air strike that targeted a meeting of [IS] leaders…in the Hajin area within Syrian territory,” the military’s Joint Operations Command said.
“The operation resulted in the complete destruction of the targets, and the killing of around 45 terrorists,” it added.
Last December, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced a “final victory” against the extremist group, vowing to target the threat on its border with Syria. Baghdad has repeatedly stated that the cross-border air raids are in coordination with the Syrian government.
Baghdad has good relations with Iran and Russia, the Syrian Regime’s main backers in the seven-year-old Syrian civil war, while also enjoying strong support from the US-led coalition.
Last month, Iraqi F-16 warplanes shelled IS targets south of the al-Dashisha area in Syria targeting the group’s logistical support bases.