After Islamic State terrorists carried out deadly terrorist attacks in Brussels, Paris, Egypt and other parts of Africa, the U.S. reportedly sent U.S. special operations forces after those believed to be responsible for planning the acts of terror.
And they were up for the challenge.
So far, Members of Delta Force and Navy SEALs have hunted down and killed 40 “external operations leaders, planners, and facilitators” behind several of the Islamic State attacks, The Daily Beast reported, citing “defense officials.”
The special ops forces’ success has significantly affected the terrorist group’s ability to recruit foreign fighters, according to the report.
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That’s less than half the overall number of ISIS targets that special operators have taken off the battlefield, one official explained, including top leaders like purported ISIS second-in-command Haji Imam, killed in March.
The previously unpublished number provides a rare glimpse into the U.S. counterterrorist mission that is woven into overall coalition efforts to defeat ISIS, and which is credited with crippling ISIS efforts to recruit foreign fighters and carry out more plots like the deadly assault on Paris that killed 130 last fall.
A bomb attack in eastern Saudi Arabia that officials say wounded an officer on patrol is the latest attack to be claimed by Islamic State-linked terrorists.
Police said early Friday that the attack caused a "minor injury" to the police officer. It took place on Thursday night in the country's predominantly Shiite east. Five vehicles were damaged.
A post on a website known to be used by Islamic State sympathizers claimed the attack and said militants carried out other assaults in the area. The police's statement, carried by the state-run Saudi Press Agency, did not mention any other attack.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.