Airstrikes on Iranian Militias in Syria

October 21, 2020
2 min read

An Iran-backed militia in eastern Syria has confirmed it was targeted in an airstrike on Monday, October 19, resulting in the deaths of at least two people.

Unidentified aircraft, believed to be affiliated with the United States-led international coalition, carried out the air raids against Iranian militia positions in the Deir Al-Zour area in the city of Albukamal between nine pm and midnight on October 19.

"The raids targeted Al-Hawitah near the Al-Hizam area, east of Albukamal, at around 9.00 PM on Monday night,” an informed source close to the militia told IranWire. There were thought to have been several raids throughout the night.

The source added that the raids targeted machinery that was being used by Iranian militias to dig tunnels and prepare camps for their fighters, destroying three machines, killing two people and wounding seven others. The wounded were transferred to Al-Quds Hospital in the city of Albukamal, a hospital affiliated with the Iranian Revolutionary Guards.

The source confirmed that a farm where Iranian military commander Haj Askar had been based was intermittently targeted. Askar was said to be based at the farm while he was inspecting the desert region. Air strikes also hit tunnels under construction that were intended to link Revolutionary Guards' camps.

Amjad Al-Sari from the Ain Al-Furat  satellite television network told IranWire: "International coalition aircraft targeted drilling machinery belonging to Iranian militias that was being used to dig tunnels and pave new roads toward Haj Askar's farm, the Iranian military official for the Revolutionary Guards in eastern Syria.”

Al-Sari also confirmed that the airstrikes killed the driver of one of the machines as well as two others, in addition to wounding several others.

Tehran appointed Commander Haj Askar in late 2019 to lead Iran’s militias in eastern Syria, specifically in the governorate of Deir Al-Zour. He also oversees the organization, training, and distribution of tasks to these militias.

The source IranWire spoke to indicated that in mid-October, coalition warplanes carried out several raids on locations occupied by Iranian militias in the region, extending from the city of Al-Mayadeen to the Iraqi border. The planes targeted the desert region of Al-Mayadeen, Sabikhan, Al-Jala', and Al-Salihiyah up to the Al-Thulathat area in the Albukamal desert and the Akashat area on the Syrian-Iraqi border.

There are currently around 400 Iraqi Hezbollah fighters present in the Akashat area, which also serves as a military center for the group and is used to store equipment and military support for the militias.

The Deir Al-Zour region, which is under the control of Iranian militias, has regularly been hit by airstrikes carried out by the international coalition, and, in response, militias change their location frequently.


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Airstrikes on Iranian Militias in Syria