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US-led forces destroy own combat drone after Syria crash

A US military drone strike in Afghanistan has killed the Al-Qaeda commander behind the 2008 bombing of a Marriott Hotel in Islamabad (AFP Photo/Isaac Brekken)

Washington (AFP) - Coalition forces fighting the Islamic State group in northern Syria destroyed one of their own combat drones Tuesday after the unmanned aircraft crashed, the US Air Force said.

The MQ-9 Reaper -- a type of armed drone -- crashed while flying a combat mission after remote pilots lost "positive control" of the aircraft, the Air Force said in a statement.

"The remotely piloted aircraft crash was not due to enemy fire. There are no reports of civilian injuries or damage to civilian property at the crash site," the statement reads.

Coalition craft then destroyed what was left of the drone. The Air Force stressed it was "not in enemy hands."

The cause of the crash was under investigation.

A US-led coalition has for nearly two years been bombing IS targets in Iraq and Syria, with much of the campaign conducted via armed Reaper and Predator drones.