Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Israel Strikes near Damascus as 3,000 ISIS Members Remain in Syria, Iraq

Israel Strikes near Damascus as 3,000 ISIS Members Remain in Syria, Iraq

Tuesday, 5 December, 2017 - 07:00
The victory over ISIS in Raqqa has also hit the terror group's propaganda effort. (Reuters)

Israel intensely struck the Jamarya military facility and research center near Damascus on Monday night, only hours after attacking a radar station in the area of al-Damir, sources in the Syrian capital confirmed.

This is the second time Israel carries out air strikes against the Jamarya facility, which is believed to include experts and an Iranian military program.

Meanwhile, Colonel Ryan Dillon, the spokesman for Operation Inherent Resolve, the Western coalition against ISIS, said that there were still around 3,000 remaining fighters from the terror group in Syria and Iraq following the recapture of Raqqa and Mosul.

Dillon then told Asharq Al-Awsat on the sidelines of a briefing at the US embassy in London on Monday that the International Coalition contacts Russian forces several times a day, using two lines: the first by air and the second by land.

He added that the two sides held at least three face-to-face meetings in the last few months to “prevent confrontation and to secure the safety of their forces.”

Dillon said: “The non-confrontation strategy is efficient and necessary as it allowed us to fight ISIS.”

Asked about the Turkish threats to attack the Syrian city of Afrin, where the Syrian Democratic Forces are located, Dillon replied: “The coalition is not present in the city of Afrin. Currently, we are working with our allies to clean the rest of the regions where ISIS militants are still present, in the center of the Euphrates River.”

During his press briefing, Dillon also said that the ISIS propaganda machine has been badly damaged following the downfall of Raqqa.

He added that ISIS’ monthly multi-language online magazine Rumiyah has not been published since September.

The spokesperson also said that the military capacity of ISIS has significantly weakened.

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