US Military Denies Targeting Mosque In Northwestern Syria


Ahrar al-Sham, a powerful Syrian rebel group, on Friday said the us -led coalition against Islamic State was behind a deadly mosque attack near Syria's Aleppo that a war monitor said killed dozens of people.

Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said, the mosque in the Jeenah area, in Aleppo province was packed with worshippers for evening prayers.

ISIS had at one point held the area around al-Jineh as part of its push into the northwestern part of Aleppo, but appears to have been expelled.

According to a Centcom statement, "US forces conducted an airstrike on an Al-Qaeda in Syria meeting location March 16 in Idlib, Syria, killing several terrorists". Videos have emerged online of a bombed building attached to a mosque there, but a USA military official says those images don't correlate with surveillance images taken after the strike.

Human rights activists and monitors claimed over social media that USA strikes were responsible for the civilian casualties. The mosque, located in al-Jina, had around 300 people inside at the time of the attack.

This is the image released by the Pentagon on March 17, 2017 of the site it said United States warplanes hit on March 16, 2017.

Ahrar al-Sham, an Islamist group that has fought alongside nationalist factions under the banner of the Free Syrian Army, has been involved in clashes this year with jihadist groups that Washington has targeted.

Most of those killed were civilians, the observatory said.

The head of the Britain-based Observatory said that aside from the 42 people killed, more than 100 were wounded and that many remained trapped under the collapsed structure.

The Pentagon is scrambling to figure out just what happened with an airstrike in al-Jinah, Syria, that killed dozens on Thursday night.

Russian and Syrian aircraft are known to operate in the opposition-held region. The airstrike killed at least 42 people, according to a monitoring group.