ISIS has claimed responsibility for a deadly explosion that killed four Americans — two US service members, a defense contractor and a Department of Defense civilian — in the Syrian city of Manbij on Wednesday, according to the US military. All four US personnel that were killed were Americans, according to Commander Sean Robertson, a spokesman for the Pentagon.
The civilian was an intelligence expert who was with the troops hoping to collect information about security and adversaries in the area, according to three US officials.
“Two US service members, one Department of Defense (DoD)civilian and one contractor supporting DoD were killed and three service members were injured while conducting a local engagement in Manbij, Syria,” US Central Command said in a statement.
“Initial reports indicate an explosion caused the casualties, and the incident is under investigation,” the statement said.
Prior to Wednesday’s attack, only two US service members had been killed in action in Syria since the start of the campaign in 2014.
The US-led coalition confirmed earlier Wednesday that US service members were killed in the attack, but did not provide details regarding the number of casualties at the time and said the service members were “conducting a routine patrol” at the time of the explosion.