High-tech war kit can not prevent civilian deaths in Iraq


Iraqi government forces hold an ISIS group flag.

An airstrike killed a leader of propaganda operations for the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, CBS News national security correspondent David Martin reports.

US -led coalition airstrikes have accounted for at least 229 civilian deaths in the fight against ISIS since the operation began in 2014, the Pentagon said Saturday.

Iraqi forces, backed by a US-led coalition, have been battling since October to retake the city of Mosul, Daesh's stronghold in Iraq and the city where Baghdadi declared a caliphate almost three years ago. The Canadian Press news service also reported the commandos were involved in assisting Iraqi troops fighting in the western half of the city.

US military officials told NBC News they have not confirmed the Iraqi military's report.

The coalition insists that the IS group has targeted civilians and used them as human shields, making it hard to avoid civilian casualties despite its state-of-the-art technology.

More news: Governor's egg hunt back on after fugitive captured

Iraqi intelligence has previously claimed Iyad al-Obaidi, also known as Fadel Haifa, is considered the deputy leader.

Yesterday, Islamic State fired at least 18 rockets from western Mosul into the eastern part which Iraqi force have retaken, the city's police chief Brigadier General Wathiq al-Hamdani told Reuters.

Russian Federation is stepping up its criticism of U.S. military action in Iraq - calling Pentagon comments about civilian casualties in Mosul "absurd".

Most Iraqis support the drive into Mosul but there is growing concern over the civilian casualties arising from coalition airstrikes. But what still worries the US forces is whether Baghdadi will repeat what the late al Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden had done - hide out for years even after his group's last known strongholds had fallen.

The investigation was broadened after a USA team visited the site of the March 17 airstrike and determined that there was evidence that the strike hit a house where civilians were located, a defense official told CNN. USA forces are not directly involved in combat, and are serving in supporting and advising roles.

ISIS previously said al-Adnani died in an August 30 strike in al-Bab in Syria's devastated Aleppo province.