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Tuesday, Sep 30, 2014

World

Destroying "network of death"

The New Paper | Tuesday, Sep 30, 2014

The United States bombed Islamic State-controlled oil refineries in Syria on Wednesday as President Barack Obama recruited more allies to fight the jihadist "network of death".

US, Saudi and Emirati warplanes broadened their bombardment to target oil installations in eastern Syria that have helped fund the jihadist group's brutal rise from rebel faction to alleged global threat, AFP reported.

Overnight from Tuesday to Wednesday, US air raids targeted ISIS fighters threatening the Kurdish regional capital in Iraq and damaged eight militant vehicles operating in eastern Syria near the Iraqi border.

As night fell on Wednesday, Arab jets joined the US-led bombardment as the target list was expanded to include economic assets.

The latest round of air raids focused on 12 targets in eastern Syria, where ISIS extremists control small-scale oil refineries. "These 12 targets were what we call modular oil refineries," Pentagon spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby told CNN.

Alongside US aviation and cruise missiles, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Jordan have hit targets in Syria and France in Iraq. Qatar is providing logistical support.

WHERE ISIS GETS ITS WEAPONS

The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is using large captured US-made weapons and has access to anti-tank rockets supplied by Saudi Arabia to a moderate rebel group, according to a report published early this month.

The study by the London-based Conflict Armament Research consultancy found that ISIS militants had access to large numbers of US weapons, which they were moving to key battlefields. The report drew no conclusions about how the weapons were sourced.

But the capitulation of the Iraqi army in northern Iraq on June 10 gave the jihadis access to military arsenals in the north of the country, which were full of US-supplied assault rifles and ammunition, as well as heavy weapons.


This article was first published on September 26, 2014.
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