Syria says US-led strike hits troops in east, USA denies

Syria says US-led strike hits troops in east, USA denies

Artillery are seen lined up in the village of Suway'iah, near the Syrian border town of Albu Kamal, on November 10, 2017. They said 25 fighters were killed, three are missing and about 30 were wounded.

The Iraqi PMF have demanded an explanation from the United States over the airstrikes, but USA defense officials have repeatedly stressed that neither US nor allied aircraft attacked PMF or Syrian regime forces.

US-led coalition aircraft have reportedly bombed Syrian military positions in the Al Bukamal area of Deir ez-Zor province in eastern Syria, state media outlet SANA reports, citing a military source.

"Thirty-eight non-Syrian fighters from regime loyalist militias were killed in the night-time raid on Al-Hari, on the Syrian-Iraqi border", said Observatory head Rami Abdel Rahman.

Iraq's Iran-backed Popular Mobilization Forces, the units' umbrella organization, said in a statement that USA aircraft late Sunday night fired two missiles that hit a group of its fighters deployed along the Iraq-Syria border to prevent breaches by the Islamic State group.

"No member of the U.S. -led coalition carried out strikes near Albu Kamal", U.S. Central Command spokesman Major Josh Jacques told Reuters.

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The officials said the dead were mostly members of Iraq's Hezbollah Brigades, which have been active in Syria's civil war fighting alongside government forces.

United States officials have said that many pro-regime militias that are also aligned with Iran operate in the border area between Syria and Iraq.

The SDF, with the support of the US-led anti-IS coalition, began Operation Roundup on May 1, with a declared goal of driving out remaining jihadists from the Iraq-Syria border region and the middle Euphrates River Valley. Reuters could not independently verify the Observatory's report of casualties.

Throughout Syria's seven-year war, Israel has carried out scores of strikes within the neighboring country against what it describes as Hezbollah or Iranian targets.

Israel maintains a formal policy of non-intervention in the Syrian civil war but continuously asserts that it will not allow Iran to entrench itself in the country, where it has for years provided military backing to Assad alongside Russian Federation. "Secondly, we will take action, and are already taking action, against the attempted military entrenchment of Iran and its proxies, both close to the border and deep withinSyria".

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