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The 1st Expeditionary Rescue Group activated at an undisclosed base in the Persian Gulf region to provided combat search and rescue for coalition forces operating over Iraq and Syria, officials announced. After ISIS fanatics burned a downed Jordanian F-16 pilot to death in February, "it became readily apparent that we needed a rescue group to harmonize rescue initiatives across the Levant area of operations," 332nd Air Expeditionary Wing commander Col. Michael Koscheski said in a release. The US military has conducted two personnel recovery missions in theater to date—including an attempt to rescue the Jordanian pilot—and aircrew had flown some 6,419 airstrikes through the end of August. The unit stood up to assume responsibility for the Guardian Angels, HH-60s helicopters, and HC-130 rescue support aircraft in the region, Sept. 1.