Three militants were killed in the noon of December 7, when an alleged drone strike targeted their car in the Turkish-occupied area of Afrin in northern Syria.
According to local sources, the militants were traveling on a road in southern Afrin, when their SUV was struck with a precision-guided munition launched from an unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV).
The strike didn’t cause any explosion or collateral damage. Local observers speculated that the U.S.-made AGM-114R9X Hellfire missile was used.
The AGM-114R9X Hellfire, dubbed Ninja Bomb, is armed with a kinetic warhead with pop-out blades. Deployed in secret since 2017, with existence revealed in 2019.
The slain militants were first identified as members of the Turkish-backed Ahrar al-Sham Movement, due to a security ID of the group found in the strike scene. However, a spokesman for the group denied this soon after, claiming that the ID was forged.
Later, the Step News Agency claimed that the targeted SUV belong to a smuggler who is known for working with ISIS. According to the agency, the smuggler, an ISIS commander and his personal bodyguard were killed in the strike.
A photo of one of the slain militants revealed that he was wearing an explosive belt, which is very common among ISIS commanders.
Earlier this month, an Algerian terrorist Abu Ahmad al-Muhajir, who worked as a trainer for al-Qaeda-affiliated Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) in Greater Idlib, was assassinated in a similar fashion, likely with a Ninja Bomb.
More details about the incident, including the identity of the slain militants, will likely be revealed soon. This could lead to the side responsible for the strike.
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