Hundreds taken by IS from displacement camp in Syria
BEIRUT: Hundreds of people were taken by IS group fighters from a displacement camp in east Syria during a militant counterattack against advancing Usbacked forces, a monitor said on Saturday.
The militant raided the camp on Friday, taking “more than 100 families” including relatives of IS defectors and of militants killed in fighting, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
A number of fighters of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) died trying to defend the camp in a battle that lasted several hours, the Britainbased monitoring group said.
The Us-backed SDF launched a major assault on September 10 on the small stretch of the Euphrates Valley around the town of Hajin where they estimate some 3,000 militants are holed up.
But they have sustained heavy casualties in the operation being conducted with Us-led air support. Since Wednesday, 37 SDF fighters have been killed in militant counterattacks, the Observatory said.
IS has lost 58 fighters, most of them in retaliatory coalition air strikes, it added.
“IS is pressing its attacks in the Hajin area as the SDF battles to hold them off with the support of the international coalition,” Observatory chief Rami Abdel Rahman said. But a prolonged sandstorm has made it difficult for the coalition to carry out air strikes.