Concerned with the deteriorating situation in war-torn Syria, the US started collecting intelligence on Islamic extremists fighting to overthrow President Bashar Assad for possible drone strikes, the LA Times quoted US officials as saying on Friday.
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Despite that, the US officials clarify that US President Barack Obama has not authorized drone missile strikes in Syria and currently none are under consideration.
The CIA's counterterrorism center recently moved several targeting officers from posts in Pakistan and Yemen to Syria to improve intelligence collection on militants that could pose a terrorist threat. The US officials believe al-Qaida operatives and fighters in Iraq moved to Syria to join the opposition rebels.