US drone strikes in Yemen kill at least 9 ISIS fighters, official says

A new round of airstrikes in Yemen by American drones killed at least nine ISIS fighters, a military official said Thursday.

The ISIS militants were riding in two vehicles when they were destroyed in two separate airstrikes  in western Yemen, about halfway between the capital, Sana’a and the coastal city of Aden, according to the official.

The drone strikes marked the second time this month the U.S. military has bombed ISIS in Yemen, a U.S. military spokesman told Fox News.

Earlier this month on Oct. 16, the U.S. military conducted strikes against ISIS in Yemen for the first time which killed 50 militants inside two training camps.

The U.S. military said so far this month, it has killed over 60 ISIS fighters in Yemen as the battle to wipe out the terrorist group spreads from Iraq and Syria.

“In coordination with the government of Yemen, U.S. forces are supporting ongoing counter-terrorism operations in Yemen against ISIS and AQAP to degrade the groups' ability to coordinate external terror attacks and limit their ability to hold territory seized from the legitimate government,” said Maj. Earl Brown, a spokesman for the U.S. military’s Central Command.

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As of now, ISIS only controls about 3 percent of Iraq and 5 percent in neighboring Syria, and some of its fighters have left to find safe haven elsewhere.

“We are decimating ISIS in the Middle East," President Donald Trump said outside the White House Wednesday. “They'll go to parts of Africa, they'll go to other places, when they get to those places --we'll beat them,” he added.

The U.S. military has conducted over 100 air strikes in Yemen since President Trump took office, more than the last four years combined.

"You expect to see large flows of ISIS fighters coming out of Syria and Iraq. We don't see that at all,” said Gen. Joseph F. Dunford, Jr., chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

On Thursday, US-backed Iraqi forces kicked off a new offensive to recapture the last remaining ISIS stronghold in al-Qaim. The city, located along the Syrian border in western Iraq, is being defended by 1,500 ISIS fighters, according to U.S. military officials.