US servicemember dies after vehicle accident in Syria
A U.S. servicemember died Friday in northern Syria from injuries sustained during a vehicle roll-over, the U.S.-led coalition fighting the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria said in a statement.
The statement did not identify the victim or branch of service, saying the coalition prefers to defer identification to “relevant national authorities.” No further details of the incident were released pending notification of next of kin.
U.S. troops, mainly special operations forces, have been helping train, advise and assist Arab and Kurdish partners in the counter-ISIS fight. There are approximately 900 servicemembers operating in Syria.
Meanwhile, the anti-ISIS coalition said Friday that airstrikes have killed three senior Islamic State military officials and planners in Syria and Iraq in the past 30 days,
“The deaths of these men eliminates senior foreign fighters, who had extensive experience and training, and degrades ISIS’s ability to plan and conduct attacks on civilian targets in Iraq and Syria, as well throughout the region and in the West,” a military statement said.
Late last month, an airstrike near Mayadin, Syria killed Mustafa Gunes. He was an ISIS recruiter in Turkey and was facilitating financial support for attacks outside Syria and Iraq in the West. Another coalition strike in Mayadin earlier this month killed French-Algerian ISIS fighter Abu Asim al-Jazaeri, who was involved in an ISIS training program for youths, the coalition said.
And in Iraq last week, senior ISIS official Abu-Khattab al-Rawi, was killed along with three other terrorists during an operation near Al-Qaim. Al-Rawi operated in Iraq’s Al Anbar province, coordinating drone operations and procurement.
“The coalition will continue to degrade, disrupt, and dismantle ISIS structure, as well as exert pressure on its senior leaders and associates across multiple networks throughout Iraq and Syria,” the coalition said.