BEIRUT, LEBANON (2:59 P.M.) – Moments ago, confirmed information surfaced that the Iraqi Air Force had begun to target Islamic State positions with multiple strikes in Syria’s eastern province of Deir Ezzor.
According to reports, Iraq warplanes have so far delivered at least five strikes against ISIS in Deir Ezzor’s eastern countryside.
An Iraqi military-diplomatic source says that airstrikes are the result of a new agreement reached between Baghdad and Damascus whereby the latter has given permission to the former to carry out offensive air operations over Syrian territory.
The strikes are apparently to be carried out on a per discretion (i.e. freedom of engagement) basis. Their aim will be to preemptively break-up concentrations of Islamic State forces that mobilize along the Syrian-Iraqi border and thus reduce the effectiveness of the terrorist group’s cross-border attacks into Iraq.