Oil installations in Syria hit by anti-ISIS coalition
The United States and its partners launched a new round of strikes against Islamic State militants in Syria on Wednesday, only hours after President Barack Obama called on the world to help end the extremist group’s reign of terror in the Middle East.
“I can confirm that US military and Arab partner forces are undertaking additional strikes today against ISIL terrorists in Syria,” Pentagon press secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby said on Wednesday, using the Obama-administration’s preferred language for the group formerly known as ISIS that today identifies as the Islamic State. “These operations are ongoing, so we will not provide additional details at this time. We will do so later as operationally appropriate.”
Later, the Pentagon confirmed that less than a dozen aircraft are involved in the latest attack. US Central Command (CENTCOM), meanwhile, confirmed that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates also participated.
The latest round of strikes was acknowledged on Wednesday just shy of 12 a.m. local time in Syria and marks at least the third consecutive wave of attacks launched by the US and allied partners since Monday. Prior to then, the US had only attacked Islamic State militants in neighboring Iraq.
— Zaid Benjamin (@zaidbenjamin) September 24, 2014
According to Agency France-Presse, strikes involved targeting an oil field in Syria administered by the Islamic State, reportedly close to positions held by the group near the towns of Al-Omar and Deir ez-Zor, journalist Zaid Benjamin reported.
The US and its partners used “a mix of fighter and remotely piloted aircraft to conduct 13 of airstrikes against 12 ISIL-controlled modular oil refineries located in remote areas of eastern Syria in the vicinity of Al Mayadin, Al Hasakah, and Abu Kamal and one ISIL vehicle near Dayr az Zawr, also in eastern Syria,” read a statement by CENTCOM.
“These small-scale refineries provided fuel to run ISIL operations, money to finance their continued attacks throughout Iraq and Syria, and an economic asset to support their future operations,” the statement continued. “Producing between 300-500 barrels of refined petroleum per day, ISIL is estimated to generate as much as $2 million per day from these refineries. The destruction and degradation of these targets further limits ISIL’s ability to lead, control, project power and conduct operations.”