US airstrike kills at least 13 civilians including women and children while US President Joe Biden claims to have eliminated top Daesh leader in Syria’s Idlib province.

Pentagon hailed the operation as 'successful'.
Pentagon hailed the operation as 'successful'. (AP)

US President Joe Biden has said US forces targeted the leader of Daesh. 

"Thanks to the skill and bravery of our Armed Forces, we have taken off the battlefield Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi — the leader of Daesh. All Americans have returned safely from the operation," Biden said in a statement on Thursday. 

Earlier on Thursday, civil defence teams said at least 13 children and women also died in the operation in Syria's Idlib province. 

The operation targeted leader affiliated with the Daesh terrorist group with the support of an F-16 fighter jet and a helicopter.

An airdrop was launched at 1.20 am local time (2220GMT) from the helicopter to a house near Atmeh village.

"At around 00.30 (2130GMT), there was a noise coming from outside, I thought it was a flood. When I got out and looked, the helicopters were hovering above and one of the helicopters was calling with a megaphone," said a village resident, who spoke to Anadolu News Agency on condition of anonymity due to fear of reprisal.

Gunshots were then heard from near the house after US soldiers were calling for surrender, according to the resident who said that the neighbouring homes were damaged.

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Successful operation

Commenting on the operation, US Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby said in a brief statement that the operation was successful.

Kirby stated that there were no casualties from the US side and that more information will be shared when it becomes available.

The spokesperson declined to give any details about the target's name or group.

Footage captured by an Anadolu Agency team at the scene showed some walls and ceilings of the house collapsed due to bombs thrown during the raid, a kitchen part burned, all the furniture was destroyed and traces of blood on the floors.

According to local sources, the operation may have targeted one of the most wanted ringleaders of the Daesh terrorist group.

In October 2019, the US announced that Daesh leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi was killed in a similar operation in Idlib.

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Source: AA