Drones, Turkish Artillery Hit Daesh in Syria, 34 Dead

A Syrian national flag flutters next to the Daesh slogan in Homs Governorate, Syria in this April 1 file photo. The Turkish army claims to have struck Daesh targets in Syria and killed 34 militants on May 2. REUTERS/Omar Sanadiki/Files

ANKARA, May 2 – Shelling by Turkish artillery and drones which took off from southern Turkey struck Daesh targets in Syria on Sunday, killing 34 militants, the Turkish military said.

It said the strikes, in response to Daesh rocket attacks which hit the southern Turkish province of Kilis, destroyed six vehicles and five Daesh gun positions.

The border town of Kilis and surrounding area has been hit frequently by rocket fire from Daesh-controlled Syrian territory in recent months, killing civilians.

In Sunday’s strikes, Turkish howitzers and multiple rocket launchers first hit Daesh targets about 12 km (seven miles) south of the border, then four drones that took off from the Incirlik base in southern Turkey destroyed further targets, the military said.

Turkey has repeatedly fired back at Daesh positions under its rules of engagement, but has said it needs greater support from Western allies, citing the difficulty of hitting moving targets with howitzers.

Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu was quoted as saying last week that the United States would deploy a rocket launcher system near the stretch of border that has come under attack. A senior U.S. military official confirmed the matter was under discussion but declined to comment further.

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