The US carried out the largest airstrikes barrage against the Islamic State during the night. Large explosions were heard in the main Raqqa base located in Eastern Syria and in the Idlib province. There are some reports that attacks also took place close to Deir Azzor.
The Pentagon released a statement in which it said that 14 airstrikes were carried out with the support of Qatar, Bahrain, Jordan and Saudi Arabia. Jordan did confirm that the airforce “destroyed a number of targets that belong to some terrorist groups that sought to commit terror acts inside Jordan.”
Raqqa is well-known as an Isis stronghold.
The air strikes were carried out during Tuesday at early hours. Initial reports highlight that dozens of Islamic State fighters were wounded or killed during the attack.
Over 8 explosions targeted Khorasan, a second group that the US officials described as being a network of veterans of Al-Qaida that were plotting against Western and US interests from Syria.
According to Human Rights Syrian Observatory, the al-Nusra Front, a third group and an al-Qaida branch, was targeted as well. This group was known as having thought the Islamic State in the past but it was not confirmed by US that they were hit.
Hadi al Bahra, Syrian Opposition Coalition president, declared:
“We have called for air strikes such as those that commenced tonight with a heavy heart and deep concern, as these strikes begin in our homeland. We insist that utmost care is taken to avoid civilian casualties. Our people have been suffering at the hands of Isis for over a year.”
These strikes are not to be followed with on-ground support, at least not for now. President Obama ruled out the deployment of US combat troops.
The US will train Syrian rebels with the purpose of working with the air strikes in order to regain territory held in Syria from the Islamic State.