Jan 16, 2021
JERUSALEM WEATHER

Just a few days after an assassination eliminated the top general in Iran’s nuclear weapons program, a senior member of the Iranian military was killed in a drone strike in Syria. 

Muslim Shahdan Killed in Drone Strike on Syria-Iraq Border

Al-Arabiya News cited Iraqi intelligence sources as saying that a senior member of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) was killed in a drone strike along the Syria-Iraq border on Sunday while driving in his car with three bodyguards. 

The vehicle was reportedly crossing the border into Iraq in the eastern Deir ez-Zor province, a major link between Iran and Lebanon. The majority of Iran-backed foreign militias fighting for the Assad regime’s forces are located in Deir ez-Zor. These groups, operating among the Sunni-majority population, are being commanded by the IRGC.

The man was initially identified as Muslim Shahdan though some media conjectured that this was an alias as there is no mention of such a commander in Iranian media before this incident.

Tasnim News Agency published a statement by Ali Rabie, the Spokesman of the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, denying the strike took place. 

There were no claims of responsibility for the drone strike. 

Other Recent Strikes Attributed to Israel

The killing of Shahdan comes just days after the assassination of top Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. Iran has blamed Israel for the incident. The Israeli government has not responded to these claims.

Israel has been accused of carrying out several airstrikes in Syria against Iranian military targets in recent weeks. Last month, Israel announced that they launched several airstrikes targeting storage facilities, military compounds, and Syrian surface-to-air missile batteries in retaliation for explosives placed inside Israel on the border fence.

Last week, an airstrike killed  19 Iran-backed militia forces including two officers.

According to Al-Arabiya and Al-Hadath, an airstrike on Tuesday night in Syria targeted an Iranian shipment of money that was being delivered to Hezbollah of Lebanon. The money was sent from Tehran to Damascus using Fars Airline and was destroyed while being loaded from the plane onto the truck.