Two U.S.-led operations to save hostages held captive by the Islamic State (ISIS, ISIL, IS) in Syria, including the Jordanian pilot, “ended in failure” amid heavy fire from the jihadist group, reports the International Business Times (IBT).
The failed missions took place in the Islamic State’s de-facto capital city of Raqqa in Syria on the first day of 2015.
IBT reports that “the target was to retrieve a number of hostages including Muadh al-Kasasbeh, the Jordanian pilot who was captured by Islamic State after his plane was downed over IS territory.”
The anti-ISIS group Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently confirmed that the two botched operations took place on January 1.
Coalition forces “came under heavy fire from IS militants,” forcing the U.S.-led soldiers to abort their mission, reports IBT.
U.S.-led “fighter jets early Friday morning heavily bombed the area surrounding the house where the pilot, Moaz Safi Yousef al-Kassasbeh, is allegedly being held by Islamic State (ISIS) terrorists in Raqqah, according to the Turkish Anadolou news agency,” explains Arutz Sheva. “The goal: to allow two US military helicopters to swoop in for a rescue mission to save the pilot, according to Syrian news sources–a mission which failed when heavy fire prevented the helicopters from entering the area safely to make the rescue,” it adds.
The Hill reports that a U.S.-led coalition spokesman said there is “no information” on the botched rescue attempts “at this time.”
In the sixth edition of ISIS’ Dabiq magazine, the jihadist group featured an interview with the Jordanian pilot, who said his fighter jet was shot down by an ISIS heat-seeking missile near Raqqa.
Nevertheless, the official position of the United States is that ISIS did not shoot down the plane.