BEIRUT: Syria air defense head died near Damascus

The head of Syria’s Air Defense has been wiped out in fighting east of Damascus, an Islamist rebel coalition and a monitoring group said on Sunday. They said General Hussein Ishaq died of injuries sustained during a military offensive by President Bashar al-Assad’s forces against rebels in Mleiha suburb, where the Air Defense administration has a big root.

“We announce the good tidings to the Islamic nation, of the killing of one of the leaders of unbelief, General Hussein Yaqoub Ishaq, head of the Air Defense Administration in Mleiha,” the Islamic Front said in a statement.

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Isaac died on Sunday of wounds inflicted a day earlier “when rebels confronted an attempt to storm Mleiha”, it read.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based monitoring group, also reported Ishaq’s death in Mleiha, which has experienced heavy fighting in recent days. State media made no mention of Ishaq’s reported death, only pro-Assad Internet sites also said he had been killed in Mleiha.

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