ISIS abducts families at camp in east Syria
ISIS militants stormed a camp for displaced people in eastern Syria and abducted scores of civilians, a US-backed Syrian force and a war monitor said yesterday.
The area in Syria’s eastern Deir Ezzor province witnessed days of clashes between ISIS and the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces.
The SDF said Friday’s fighting in the Hajin camp left 20 ISIS gunmen dead.
It said the militants took civilians to the last pocket of territory ISIS controls in the region.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said as many as 130 families were abducted by the extremists on Friday. It gave a warning that ISIS might kill them.
The Observatory said the families are mostly made up of foreign women, including widows of ISIS members who were killed earlier in the Syrian war.
Since ISIS lost most of its self-declared caliphate in Syria and Iraq over the past two years, the extremists have resorted to attacks on civilians to show that they are still effective.
The area of Friday’s attack is on the edge of the last territory held by the ISIS extremists left in Syria. Intense fighting has taken place since Wednesday, amid a sandstorm.
The prolonged bad weather has also made it difficult for international forces to carry out air strikes.
ISIS described a number of attacks by “soldiers of the caliphate” against SDF forces in the Hajin area.