United States does not intend to remain in Syria after defeating ISIL

Kelly Massey
August 21, 2017

Lebanese commander Joseph Aoun announced the operation - which comes after steady successes against IS over the past year - via Twitter and the Central Military Media outlet. Today around 30 square kilometers [11.8 square miles] have been cleared [from terrorists].

The Lebanese military managed to destroy vehicle and motorcycle bombs carrying terrorists which allowed Lebanese forces to avoid more casualties, the statement added.

BEIRUT (AP) - Lebanon suffered its first casualties from a massive operation to drive the Islamic State group from an area along the Syrian border on Sunday when a roadside bomb killed three soldiers.

The offensive on Daesh started with a hail of Army artillery and rocket fire around dawn Saturday, moments after the head of the military announced the start of the campaign to rid the country of militant groups.

"It's the most hard battle so far waged by the Lebanese army against terrorist groups", he said, citing the nature of the terrain and enemy tactics.

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It is the last part of the Lebanese-Syrian frontier under ISIL control.

"The terrorists are now being humiliated", he said, adding, "The military operation will continue until the targets are met, the terrorists are expelled and soldiers are deployed along the borders".

The operation follows one by Shiite militant group Hezbollah last month against jihadists in another border area further south.

Jurud Arsal had been used as hideout by anti Bashar al-Assad militants and remained home to a number of refugees dislocated during the six year war. But it has not been able to evade threats to its security, including sectarian infighting and random auto bombings, particularly in 2014, when militants linked to al-Qaeda and Isis overran the border region, kidnapping Lebanese soldiers.

Qanso insisted the Lebanese army was not coordinating its moves with Assad's forces or the Hezbollah fighters - a potential embarrassment for Washington, should its ally the Lebanese military be working closely with a group that the United States has classifies as a terror organization.

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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