A local driver working with an NBC News team in Syria was killed Saturday when a device exploded near the group of journalists, NBC News announced.
“Earlier today, a device exploded in the vicinity of a group from @NBCNews in Syria. We are thankful that NBC employees escaped unharmed, however one of the local drivers working with them was tragically killed,” NBC News President Noah Oppenheim said in a statement. “Our deepest sympathies go out to his family and loved ones.”
The network is gathering information about the incident and is “in touch with the driver’s family to support them however we can,” Oppenheim said. The exact location of the explosion was not released, nor the name of the victim.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters aboard Air Force One on Friday that territorial ISIS caliphate had been “100 percent eliminated” from Syria, marking a major victory for the president.
Saturday, the Syrian Democratic Forces confirmed that ISIS had lost its final stronghold over the Islamic State’s self-declared caliphate in the war-torn country. But according to the Washington Post, the U.S.-led coalition in the region cautioned that didn’t mean the end of violent extremism.
The coalition commander, U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Paul LaCamera, warned that ISIS fighters “are preserving their force and are waiting for the right time to re-emerge.”