US hellicopters have evacuated over 20 ISIS field commanders from Deir Ezzor to “safer regions”, the Russian state-run media outlet Sputniknews reported on Thursday referring an anonymous military and diplomatic source.
“Amid successful actions by Syrian government troops in the eastern part of Syria in late August, a number of field [ISIS] commanders backed by US special services, had been promptly evacuated from Deir ez-Zor [Deir Ezzor] to safer regions in order to use their experience in other directions,” Sputniknews quoted the source as saying.
Accotding to the report, a “US Air Force helicopter” evacuated 2 ISIS field commanders of “European origin” with members of their families from an area northwest of Deir Ezzor city on August 26.
Two days later a US helicopter evacuated 20 ISIS field commanders and militants close to them from an area southeast of Deir Ezzor city to northern Syria.
“Militants who lost their commanders due to the Americans, usually tend to cease organized actions, leave their positions, join other [ISIS] units or one by one flee. This eventually contributes to the success of the offensive by the Syrian government troops in eastern Syria.“
However, some Syrian opposition sources said that Sputniknews’ report was not accurate and that the US was evacuating their agents and some important defectors.
Earlier in September, reports also appeared that aircraft with removed identification marks started transferring groups of ISIS fighters as well as some separate ISIS emissaries from southern to northern Afghanistan. These aircrafts were reportedly operating under the cover of the US-led coalition.