The US Department of Defense has concealed the fact that in March 2019 dozens of civilian victims were killed in an air attack by two aircraft at positions of Islamic State (is) in Syria.
In addition to the US casualties, the Pentagon says US and non-state contractors are being charged with taking down terrorist videos in Syria despite no evidence to the contrary.
In July 2015 US and military officials released an update to their Global Positioning System (GLSS), which can be used to determine which of two or more targets is designated in Syria as a battlefield.
The release of the update also said that the US and other countries involved in combat in Syria were required to comply with the World Health Organisation’s request for information on the US and UN agencies involved in the conflict.
As previously reported, the group in Syria – and some international organisations like Amnesty International – claim to provide information for victims of Syrian government forces.
But the official war on terror group al-Nusra Front continues because of its links to al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri. The terrorist group is also one of the main proponents of the pro-Western rebels in Syria, which were backed by both US and Western powers.
A lawyer from the Air Force warned immediately after the attack that the law of war had probably been violated. Instead of conducting an investigation, the military tried to cover all tracks, writes The New York Times. The bombing killed 80 people, including possibly 60 civilians, mainly women and children.
“We have seen no evidence to suggest it was a coordinated incident,” Mr Nisman wrote in the letter to the government.
The government has rejected attempts to blame it for the attacks, saying it was the government’s responsibility.
The bombing came on the heels of the killing of eight schoolchildren in a strike hit by a mortar on London bridges on Monday.
But Prime Minister David Cameron’s office said the attack was “shocking” but that the country would be holding a more intensive consultation on the attack.
Image copyright PA Image caption Mr Nisman expressed his anger over the killing, but not yet an apology
In a statement late on Monday, the Foreign Office said: “No terrorist group should, under any circumstances, conduct deadly attacks against the UK and in any circumstances be responsible for this attack, or its aftermath.”
“The Foreign Office will carefully examine whether anyone responsible for the attack should face any sanction or punishment or be suspended from office, or otherwise punished. For instance, an individual who poses a safety risk to the public if there is an initial risk that he, or she, does not do so, may be subject to sanctions.”
Mr Blair has made clear that he has not taken the government to court in relation to the deadly bombing, calling it a political “witch-hunt” by the government over which he is accused.
The newspaper investigated the bombing of Baghouz for months, had access to secret documents and talked to those involved. Baghouz was the last settlement in Syria that was owned by ISIS and many fighters had retreated there with their families.
The army leadership first acknowledged that the attack had taken place when the New York Times confronted her with the results of the investigation. In a statement, the Army Command said the bombing was justified, as at least sixteen ISIS fighters were killed and “only” four civilians. Women and children also sometimes fought for ISIS, and therefore it is possible that among the other sixty deaths were also militants, according to the statement.
The military statement also noted that Islamic State’s leadership has been under siege in Iraq, including in Mosul, the country’s second-largest city, from ISIS forces and militias led by its self-declared “caliph”, Sayyid Qutb.
According to Islamic State, these attacks came in advance of a major battle against the Iraqi army in the city of Karbala, just 50 kilometers from the city of Raqqa, and the Iraqi capital of Mosul.
Al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri, now head of Al Qaeda’s Mosul branch, warned on Twitter on Monday that the “Islamic State” would take over the entire caliphate by “calamitous means” – including by kidnapping or executing noncombatants.
“These will kill all of you. These is my command. I declare. So whoever keeps their hands in the way of this victory will lose his territory (the Islamic State) and the Muslims will be torn apart” he said.
He urged Muslims and “all noncombatants” to protect themselves and their property from terrorist attacks, calling for “the extermination of all noncombatants.”
The attack was ordered by a secret command unit, Task Force 9. It was also this group that later investigated whether the rules had been violated. Coalition forces later wiped out all traces of the bombing on the ground, writes the newspaper.
The rebels said the bombings were carried out after it was discovered that the rebels had fired mortar rounds into the city of Aleppo, leaving little or no evidence to prove their accusations.
Syrian government forces have been fighting to contain the rebels in their southern city of Hasakah since March.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights group, which monitors government operations on the ground, said the mortar shells had hit homes and hospitals at various points of the city, including one in Rimal.
It said the attack, which took place in the evening and was reported by a local pro-government news agency, had left about 80 people dead, most of them women and children.
Fighters from three groups – the Nour al-Sham-affiliated Jabhat al-Nusra, Tareq al-Sham, Jabhat al-Nusra and the al-Qaeda-linked Al-Nusra Front – also took part in the airstrike.
Jabhat al-Nusra – formerly also known as Al Takfiri Nowan – is a radical Islamist group which accuses Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s army of being a “fascist state”.