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U.S., Allies Conduct 12 Raids In Iraq, Syria

The United States and its allies have conducted 12 raids in Iraq and Syria, hitting targets of the Islamic State (IS) militant group in both countries.

The U.S. Central Command said on December 27 that raids in Iraq struck an IS tactical unit near the town of Al-Asad, and another near Fallujah.

The raids hit IS vehicles near Mosul and Fallujah and destroyed IS buildings near Bayji and Al-Asad as well as destroying an IS refinery near Al-Qaim.

All six strikes in Syria hit positions near the besieged town of Kobani and destroyed IS buildings, fighting positions and vehicles.

Meanwhile, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on December 27 that 313 civilians had died this year on the outskirts of the capital, Damascus, due to shortages of food and medical supplies caused by government blockades.

The group said the majority of those 313 deaths happened in the area of the Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta, which has been under a "suffocating siege" for more than a year.

With reporting by dpa