Published On: Tue, Sep 9th, 2014

Armed U.S. drones spotted flying over Syria in possible hunt for ISIS leader

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National Post: Armed U.S. drones spotted flying over Syria in possible hunt for ISIS leader

American drones are being flown over the Syrian stronghold of the Islamic State of Iraq & Al-Sham for the first time, in an effort to target Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, the jihadi group’s leader and self-declared caliph.

Residents of the northern Syrian city of Raqqa have captured photographs and video footage of remotely piloted planes Western weapons experts identified as U.S. Predators, the same drones used in Pakistan and Yemen to attack suspected terrorists.

Washington has not said publicly it is flying drones over Syria and the sightings over Raqqa are the first indication it is doing so.

The reports are the clearest indication Barack Obama, the U.S. President, has changed his policy against ISIS, stepping up reconnaissance of its positions as the U.S. works to assemble an international coalition to fight the jihadists. Diplomatic efforts to gain support were boosted Monday when Iraq’s parliament voted to approve a new government aimed at winning broad backing against ISIS, with Haider Al-Abadi as prime minister.

Armed U.S. drones spotted flying over Syria in possible hunt for ISIS leader.

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