BEIRUT, LEBANON (3:00 P.M.) – A Syrian military source in Damascus informed Al-Masdar News this afternoon that the death toll from the alleged U.S. attack on the army’s positions in Albukamal’s countryside has risen significantly.
According to the source, at least 40 soldiers from the Syrian Arab Army and Iraqi paramilitary forces were killed as a result of these airstrikes.
The source said the majority of the dead were Syrian Arab Army soldiers that were deployed to the Al-Harri front to protect against any potential Islamic State (ISIS) assault.
Furthermore, the source said the Syrian military believes the attack was carried out by the U.S. Coalition due to the location from where the aircraft came from in eastern Syria.
In response to these allegations, the Pentagon has denied carrying out this deadly attack in eastern Syria.
This is the second time in three weeks that the Syrian Army has accused the U.S. Coalition of bombing their troops in southeast Syria.
The Syrian Army has not responded to the attack and will not likely attack the US-backed forces in the region, as this would only escalate the situation and lead to violent confrontation.
Furthermore, it is not necessarily clear that the U.S. Coalition carried out the attack, a some pro-government activists have accused the Israeli Air Force of carrying out the airstrikes.
Albukamal is a long distance from the Israeli border, but it would be a viable target for their military, given the large presence of Iranian-backed forces near the Iraqi-Syrian border.
Israel has also never attacked the Syrian military this far from their border, so if they were behind this – this would be the first time they have every bombed the Deir Ezzor Governorate.
Though, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did vow to attack the Iranian-backed forces anywhere inside Syria during his weekly cabinet meeting.
This is a threat that he and his Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman have made on several occasions in the past.