Reports by various Iranian news websites indicate that a total of five Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) personnel were killed in Syria in recent days.
On Sunday, it was reported that Kheirollah Samadi, an IRGC general was killed when he was hit by shrapnel from a mortar shell.
Later, a local official in northern Iran announced that a retired IRGC colonel, Alireza Babai had also been killed in the battle to retake Bu Kamal, the last town in Syria held the Islamic State group.
Various Iranian news sources also report the death of at least three other Iranian servicemen in Bu Kamal.
The town on the Iraq border was taken by Syrian forces and their allies once before in recent weeks, but IS counter attacked and retook it.
Iran’s Arabic language television channel, Al Alam claims that IRGC Qods force commander, General Qasem Soleimani personally commanded the forces, which retook Bu Kamal. Independent sources have not yet confirmed if the town has been fully retaken or not.
IRGC has said repeatedly that its officers who are in Syria and Iraq only have an advisory duty and have been invited by the Syrian and Iraqi governments.
Some voices inside Iran however, have criticized Soleimani’s role in those countries, even claiming that his mismanagement led to the creation of IS.
Mehdi Khazali, a political commentator, said in a video clip last year, that if Soleimani had not been present “there would be no IS in Syria”.