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Two British soldiers injured in Syria by Islamic State missile

The soldiers, who were injured in Deir Ezzor province, were transported by helicopter to receive medical care, a UK-based activist group says
Islamic State, which once controlled large areas of Syria and Iraq, has been pounded by multiple offensives (Anadolu Agency)

Two British soldiers were wounded on Saturday in eastern Syria by a missile fired by the Islamic State (IS), according to a UK-based activist group.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the pair were part of an international coalition fighting against IS, led by the United States.

"The two British soldiers were transported by helicopter to receive medical care," the Observatory's director, Rami Abdel Rahman, told the AFP news agency.

A Kurdish fighter from the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) died in the attack in the village of Al-Shaafa in Deir Ezzor province, one of the last pockets of territory still controlled by IS in the Euphrates River valley, the Observatory aid.

The BBC said British special forces are believed to be operating in Syria but the UK's Ministry of Defence would not confirm this.

The SDF, a coalition dominated by Kurdish fighters, has spearheaded the fight against IS, supported by several countries including the UK, France, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

In March, British soldier Sergeant Matt Tonroe, 33, was killed by a roadside bomb while fighting against IS.

The international alliance seized the key IS holdout of Hajin in December after months of fighting.

IS, which once controlled large areas of Syria and Iraq, has been pounded by multiple offensives.

Since September, more than 1,000 IS fighters have been killed in the fighting compared with just under 600 SDF members, while 15,000 people have fled Hajin, according to the Observatory.

Last month, US President Donald Trump announced the withdrawal of around 2,000 US soldiers from Syria, deployed to support the SDF, claiming IS had been defeated.

The Syrian war, which began in 2011, has caused more than 370,000 deaths and forced millions of people to flee their homes.