U.S. aircraft carried out strikes Nov. 5 against five Khorasan Group targets in the vicinity of Sarmada, Syria, using bomber, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft, according to a U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) news release. U.S aircraft aircraft alone carried out the strikes, and all exited the strike areas safely. This is the second acknowledged series of strikes against the Khorasan Group.
“This network was plotting to attack in Europe or the homeland, and we took decisive action to protect our interests and remove their capability to act. We will continue to take any action necessary to disrupt attack plotting against U.S. interests.”
The command is still assessing the outcome of the attack, according to the release, but initial indications are that it destroyed or severely damaged several Khorasan Group vehicles and buildings assessed to be meeting and staging areas, IED-making facilities, and training facilities.
“The Khorasan Group is a term used to refer to a network of Nusrah Front and al Qaeda core extremists who share a history of training operatives, facilitating fighters and money, and planning attacks against U.S. and Western targets. These strikes were not in response to the Nusrah Front’s clashes with the Syrian moderate opposition, and they did not target the Nusrah Front as a whole. They were directed at the Khorasan Group whose focus is not on overthrowing the Assad regime or helping the Syrian people. These al-Qa’ida operatives are taking advantage of the Syrian conflict to advance attacks against Western interests,” the release stated.
“This network was plotting to attack in Europe or the homeland, and we took decisive action to protect our interests and remove their capability to act. We will continue to take any action necessary to disrupt attack plotting against U.S. interests,” the release concluded.