The U.S. military on Thursday destroyed a mosque in eastern Syria, claiming that the house of worship was the center of Daesh terrorist operations in the area.
The strike was conducted under Operation Inherent Resolve, the American military's name for the country's intervention in Iraq and Syria, with the goal of defeating Daesh."[Daesh] continues to violate the Law of Armed Conflict and misuse protected struc
tures like hospitals and mosques, which causes a facility to lose its protected status," U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) said in a statement.
CENTCOM said the strike killed Daesh terrorists who had been using the mosque as a command center; however, they did not specify how many people were killed.
The strike comes amid announcements of the withdra
wal of American troops from Syria.
Over the past few months, the U.S. carried out several strikes on mosques throughout Syria, with the claim they hosted Daesh terrorists, killing dozens of civilians.
Last week, the U.S. struck another mosque in northern Syria a day after four Americans, including two soldiers, were killed in an apparent suicide attack claimed by Daesh in Manbij.
The U.S.-led coalition is also known for targeting mosques in Syria. In December, the U.S.-led coalition hit a mosque in the town of Hajin in eastern Syria, administratively part of Deir el-Zour. The town was a major conflict point between Daesh and the PKK's Syrian affiliate the People's Protection Units (YPG) that is backed by the U.S. The U.S. coalition said that 16 heavily armed Daesh fighters were using the mosque as a base for attacks. The U.S.-led coalition also targeted several other mosques in Deir el-Zour province in October, leading to dozens of civilians losing their lives.
Regarding the issue, Pentagon Spokesman Col. Rob Manning refrained from providing any information on civilian casualties; instead he said that the mosque in Hajin district was targeted. Also, huge civilian casualties continue to occur during the operations. Anadolu Agency (AA) reported in December that 15 family members were killed in a single U.S.-led coalition airstrike in Deir el-Zour, according to local sources.