The U.S.-led coalition warplanes executed air strikes on military positions belonging to Assad forces on Saturday, causing devastating casualties in their ranks. The US Central Command described the air raids as “a mistake” caused by the wrong coordinates of the targets.
The Russian Defense Ministry indicated that the death toll from the air strikes jumped up to sixty dead Assad forces, including a commander, which has been denied by several activists and monitors in the region.
A local source in the regime-held areas of Deir Ezzor said that the majority of Assad forces operating in the region confirmed the number of the death toll which was presented by the Russian Defense Ministry. However, the source stated that some of those killed in the coalition air strike were actually prisoners whom the Assad-regime brought from the Adra prison, Damascus, and deployed to the front lines against Daesh in Deir Ezzor, as the regime is experiencing a manpower shortage. He added that the pro-Assad local militias in Deir Ezzor only sustained five casualties.
The source emphasized that the number of regime casualties in the air strikes has been exaggerated, stating that out of fear of facing negative consequences, the regime is now reluctant to release the names of the killed prisoners.
A D24 correspondent in the besieged areas indicated that only 12 dead bodies of the Assad forces were transported to the military hospital in Deir Ezzor on Saturday, while there were dozens of injuries among their ranks.
Haraket Shabab Alawda, a pro-Assad Palestinian militia who has fought for the regime for one year now in Deir Ezzor, has published a statement mourning the death of seven of its fighters who were killed, as claimed by it, in the coalition air strikes that targeted Thurdah Mountain on Saturday.
Noteworthy, Daesh took over Thurdah Mountain after the defensive lines of Assad forces in that area collapsed yesterday, in synchronisation with the downing of a regime fighter jet in Deir Ezzor city whose pilot was also killed.