Smoke rises from an explosion in the Syrian town of Kobane after a US-led coalition air strike, as seen from the Turkish border in the southeastern village of Mursitpinar, Sanliurfa province, on October 18, 2014
Smoke rises from an explosion in the Syrian town of Kobane after a US-led coalition air strike, as seen from the Turkish border in the southeastern village of Mursitpinar, Sanliurfa province, on October 18, 2014 © Aris Messinis - AFP/File
Smoke rises from an explosion in the Syrian town of Kobane after a US-led coalition air strike, as seen from the Turkish border in the southeastern village of Mursitpinar, Sanliurfa province, on October 18, 2014
AFP
Last updated: October 31, 2014

New report concludes that air strikes fail to stop flow of foreign fighters to Syria

Banner Icon Foreign fighters continue pouring into Syria at a rate of more than 1,000 a month, a pace that has not changed despite the US-led air campaign against Islamic State jihadists, the Washington Post reported late Thursday.

The numbers suggest that while the air strikes have not deterred foreigners, they have also not incited larger numbers to counter the American-led campaign, the paper said, quoting US intelligence and counterterrorism officials.

"The flow of fighters making their way to Syria remains constant, so the overall number continues to rise," a US intelligence official said.

But it could be weeks before a change in the rate becomes apparent, because of a lag in the intelligence that the CIA is examining, the Post quoted US officials as saying.

It said the trend over the past year suggests there are more than 16,000 foreign fighters in Syria, the Post said.

Reasons for the flow include sophisticated recruiting campaigns by radical groups in Syria like the IS jihadists and the relative ease with which people can travel to the country from North Africa, the Middle East and Europe.

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