BREAKING: Mass Casualties Reported… Death Toll Rising

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Dean James III% AMERICA’S FREEDOM FIGHTERS 

BREAKING — An Islamic State convoy coming from militant-held territory in Syria to meet ISIS evacuees being transferred there under a controversial deal brokered by Lebanon’s Hezbollah militant group has been bombed by the U.S.-led coalition, according to several sources.

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United States officials have severely criticized the transfer of hundreds of terrorists and civilians who are bound for an ISIS-held area near the Iraqi border, saying the extremists should be killed on the battlefield.

The airstrikes hit vehicles identified as belonging to ISIS that were traveling from IS-held territory toward the convoy, Col. Ryan Dillon.

Coalition officials say they are not bound by the evacuation agreement and may strike the evacuees themselves. An earlier coalition airstrike destroyed a small bridge and cratered a road, hindering the movement of the evacuees, Fox News reported.

There are about 300 militants and almost as many family members on buses being evacuated under the deal, which ended the IS presence along the Lebanon-Syria border.

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Hezbollah says the deal it negotiated to evacuate Islamic State militants from the Lebanon-Syria border was the “only way” to resolve the “national and humanitarian” case of determining the fate of Lebanese soldiers captured three years ago and later killed.

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah was responding Wednesday to criticism of the deal, which was to allow over 300 militants and their families to relocate to an IS-held area in eastern Syria, near the border with Iraq.

The U.S.-led coalition and Iraq criticized the deal. Coalition warplanes disrupted the transfer by bombing a small bridge, cratering a road and striking another group of IS militants who were traveling to meet the convoy, which is now stuck in Syrian government-held territory.

Nasrallah said in a statement that the evacuation will not change the battle for the largely IS-controlled Deir el-Zour province, where thousands of fighters are based.

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He said Hezbollah fighters and Syrian troops are engaged in the battle for the province. “We transported those defeated militants from one front we fight in to another front we also fight in,” he said.

Earlier, America’s Freedom Fighters reported that U.S.-led coalition forces were attacked by Turkish-backed rebels in northern Syria during patrols, according to coalition spokesman Colonel Ryan Dillon.

The U.S.-led coalition forces unleashed hell on the enemy!

“Our forces did receive fire and we returned fire and then moved to a secure location,” he said.

The incident reflects the complexity of the battlefield in northern Syria, where the Russia-backed Syrian army, Kurdish forces aided by the U.S.-led coalition and Syrian rebels supported by Washington’s ally Turkey are all operating, Reuters reports.

The coalition has told Turkey to tell the rebels it backs there that firing on U.S.-led coalition forces “is not acceptable”, Dillon said.

 U.S. ground forces are in northern Syria as part of the U.S.-led coalition supporting the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a local alliance of Kurdish and Arab militias battling Islamic State.

Last year, Turkey backed Syrian rebel groups in an offensive next to SDF-held areas aimed at both pushing Islamic State from the border and quelling the expansion of Kurdish influence.

The Turkish-backed rebels and the SDF have often exchanged small arms and artillery fire in other parts of northern Syria where U.S.-led coalition forces are not patrolling.

“Our overt patrols that have been conducting patrols in that area to keep tensions down received fire multiple times over the course of the last two weeks,” Dillon said.

“We let our counterparts in Turkey know this and we continue to conduct these patrols but are always prepared and ready to defend ourselves in that area.”

U.S. forces have been filmed since last year patrolling near Turkey-backed rebel areas while clearly displaying the U.S. flag.

Russian military police have also carried out patrols in northern areas held by the Syrian army and by the Kurdish YPG militia, the main component of the SDF.

Coalition and U.S. jets have carried out operations to prevent potential attacks on local forces they support.

A year ago, they scrambled to protect U.S. special operations forces in northern Syria from attack by government jets during rare clashes between the Syrian army and the YPG.

In May, the U.S. military carried out an air strike against militia supported by the Syrian government that posed a threat to U.S. and U.S.-backed fighters in southern Syria.

Meanwhile, at least eight members of the Syrian opposition were killed while others were wounded by a guided missile launched by the regime forces, near al-Yamdiyyeh village in the northern countryside of Latakia.

The Syrian Observatory for Human rights reported that the regime forces shelled the rebels locations near al-Yamdiyyeh Village, north of Latakia, killing eight members if the Syrian opposition.

Syria News reports that just last night, a missile fell near Bayt al-Hayek and al-Bassit village in the countryside of Latakia, causing material damages, but no casualties were reported.

The northern countryside of Latakia has been witnessing a decline in the military operations for weeks.

The official Twitter account of the recently-formed rebel operations room in northern Latakia, for its part, claimed on Monday that Mayhboub—who they identified as a captain—had been killed in the fighting, that left 13 other pro-regime soldiers dead.

Ten rebel groups, including Free Syrian Army-affiliated factions, Ahrar al-Sham and Jaysh al-Islam, announced Monday morning the start of the “Battle of the Response to Grievances” in the Latakia province, where pro-regime forces achieved stunning victories earlier in the year.

“We announce the formation of a joint operations room… in response to the violations and breaches of Assad’s forces,” the statement said, adding that regime troops have “targeted refugee camps… and residential areas.”

Latakia is the principal port city of Syria, as well as the capital of the Latakia Governorate. Historically, it has also been known as Laodicea in Syria or Laodicea ad Mare. In addition to serving as a port, the city is a manufacturing center for surrounding agricultural towns and villages. According to the 2004 official census, the population of the city is 383,786.

It is the 5th-largest city in Syria after Aleppo, Damascus, Homs and Hama, and it borders Tartus to the south, Hama to the east, and Idlib to the north. Cape Apostolos Andreas, the north-eastern tip of Cyprus, is about 68 miles away.

In addition to the small group of fighters inside the non-conflict area, the coalition is also concerned about a growing formation of the militia on the edge of the zone, Dillon said. The United States has observed the militia, which Defense Secretary Jim Mattis recently described as “Iran-directed,” move fighters, tanks, artillery and other weaponry up to the border of the zone to the northwest of Tanf. Dillon said fighters also are patrolling along the non-conflict zone’s border to the north and east of the base and building fighting positions.

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Dean James III% AMERICA’S FREEDOM FIGHTERS

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