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U.S. soldiers set up a portable antenna during a mortar operational rehearsal at Al-Tanf garrison, Syria, Aug. 3, 2022. Service members in northeast Syria conducted a raid targeting a senior Islamic State official, U.S. Central Command said Oct. 6, 2022.

U.S. soldiers set up a portable antenna during a mortar operational rehearsal at Al-Tanf garrison, Syria, Aug. 3, 2022. Service members in northeast Syria conducted a raid targeting a senior Islamic State official, U.S. Central Command said Oct. 6, 2022. (Tenzing Sherpa/U.S. Army)

American troops launched an early morning helicopter raid against a militant leader in northeast Syria, killing him, wounding one of his associates and capturing two others, U.S. Central Command said Thursday.

No Americans nor civilians were killed or wounded in the operation, CENTCOM said.

The attack targeted Rakkan Wahid al-Shammri, a senior Islamic State official involved in smuggling weapons and fighters, CENTCOM spokesman Col. Joseph Buccino said in an email.

The raid took place in Hassakeh province, Al Jazeera television reported, citing interviews with villagers who said that three U.S. helicopters landed in the area after midnight.

Syrian state television also said the raid killed one person, the Al Jazeera report said.

Al-Shammri had also coordinated ISIS sleeper cells, Reuters reported Thursday.

About 1,000 American troops remain in Syria to train, advise and assist the Syrian Democratic Forces, primarily to ensure the defeat of ISIS, officials have said.

ISIS detainees and their families have remained in prisons in Syria since 2019, when the group suffered defeats that resulted in the loss of the large territories they once controlled.

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J.P. Lawrence reports on the U.S. military in Afghanistan and the Middle East. He served in the U.S. Army from 2008 to 2017. He graduated from Columbia Journalism School and Bard College and is a first-generation immigrant from the Philippines.

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