More than 100 pro-Assad forces killed in thwarted attack

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A rare U.S. airstrike in Syria has killed approximately 100 pro-government troops. The official spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity.

Officials with U.S. Operation Inherent Resolve said they hit pro-regime forces in response to what they called an unprovoked attack from President Bashar al-Assad's backers.

The Euphrates, which flows through northeastern Syria, functions as a demarcation line separating the American-backed SDF and forces of the Bashar Assad regime backed by Russian Federation and Iran who are active around the city of Deir el-Zour.

Officials say the airstrikes were in defense "of coalition and partner forces".

Up to 100 pro-government fighters were killed, U.S. military officials say.

Syrian state media said the US -led coalition bombing had left dozens killed and wounded.

According to reports a headquarters of the Syrian Democratic Forces came under fire from artillery and tanks.

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The forces were "likely seeking to seize oilfields in Khusham that had been a major source of revenue for Daesh from 2014 to 2017".

Some 500 fighters had tried take ground captured from the Islamic State (IS) group by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

United States military officials said the attacks, which began late on Wednesday, were conducted to "repel acts of aggression".

A reporter for the state TV station Ikhbariya said there were "dozens of dead and wounded" as a result of the attacks.

A USA official told the news outlet that it was unclear yet whether Russian operators in the region were involved, and that the US had also not ruled out the possibility of the involvement of Iranian-backed forces.

The attack occurred eight kilometers east of the "agreed-upon Euphrates River de-confliction line".

"We estimate more than 100 Syrian pro-regime forces were killed while engaging SDF and coalition forces", while one SDF member was wounded, a U.S. military official said on condition of anonymity.