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Published On: Tue, Aug 26th, 2014

Islamic State captures Syrian air base, US warned not to intervene unilaterally

Islamic fighters captured a major military base in Syria Sunday. Tabqa airfield is the third military base to be captured by extremists within a month.
 
Armed Predator drone firing Hellfire missile 2010 photo Brigadier Lance Mans, Deputy Director, NATO Special Operations Coordination Centre

Armed Predator drone firing Hellfire missile 2010 photo Brigadier Lance Mans, Deputy Director, NATO Special Operations Coordination Centre

The Islamic State Musilm exremists captured an air base Sunday, according to Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Syrian government planes tried to counter the attack, but failed. President Obama authorized surveillance, but was warned not to attempt any air strikes.

 
“Some of the Syrian regime troops pulled out, and now the Islamic State is in full control of Tabqa,” said Observatory director Rami Abdurrahman. “This makes Raqqa province the first to fully fall out of government hands.”
 
The SANA news agency also confirmed the air base attack, saying that troops “are successfully reassembling after evacuating the airport.”
 
According to reports, at least 100 Islamic State fighters were killed and about 300 were wounded. Abdurrahman said dozens of government troops were also killed on Sunday.
 
The Associated Press reported that unmanned U.S. drone flights had started Tuesday, a move which could pave the way for airstrikes against Islamic State militants based in northern Syria. On Monday, the Syrian regime demanded that the U.S. seek permission before launching any airstrikes on its territory against Islamic State targets.
 
Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moualem signaled that Damascus would not tolerate unilateral U.S. strikes against the extremists even in areas of the country the government no longer controls.
 
Fighting terrorism, Moualem said, should be done in cooperation with the Syrian government, “not through transgression against countries’ sovereignty.”
 

“Any breach of Syrian sovereignty by any side constitutes an act of aggression,” he added, speaking at a news conference in Damascus, according to the official Syrian Arab News Agency.

Army Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Tuesday that the U.S. wants more clarity on the militants in Syria, but declined to comment on the surveillance flights.

“Clearly the picture we have of ISIS on the Iraqi side is a more refined picture,” said Dempsey, using one of the acronyms for the Islamic State group. “The existence and activities of ISIS on the Syrian side, we have … some insights into that but we certainly want to have more insights into that as we craft a way forward.”

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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    […] calling of the Assad regime will deepen tensions in the area, especially since they asked the U.S. not to intervene unilaterally.  Additionally, there is great concern over the “rebels” and their allegiances since […]

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    […] Islamic State captures Syrian air base, US warned not to intervene unilaterally […]

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