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Syria Direct: News Update 10-21-14

Regime advances against IS in Deir e-Zor Regime forces launched […]

21 October 2014

Regime advances against IS in Deir e-Zor

Regime forces launched an attack against Islamic State (IS) fighters in Deir e-Zor’s provincial capital Monday night and into Tuesday, taking over large parts of the southeast and killing three IS fighters of foreign origin, reported the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

The regime also launched four air raids on the IS-controlled neighborhoods of Huweija and Sakr that fall close to the city center, reported pro-opposition media collective Deir e-Zor Under Fire.

The regime gained control of all major land entrances into Deir e-Zor city after destroying the Siyasiya bridge in September—the last active supply route into provincial capital— and instituted an ongoing blockade on IS forces and civilians inside.

In related news, IS executed one of their sharia court judges in the southeast outskirts of Deir e-Zor on the charge of “spying and corresponding with coalition forces,” reported pro-regime news network Syria Now on Monday.

IS carried out two separate executions of sharia court judges in September on the same charge, including a Kuwaiti judge who had overseen the execution of 400 members of the Shaitat tribe in August.

Lebanon to stop accepting refugees

After taking in at least 1.1 million Syrian refugees, Lebanon is no longer taking in any more, announcing Monday its turn towards a policy that some suspected it had adopted weeks before, reported Lebanese daily A-Nahar.

“Lebanon will not receive refugees after today and this is will be announced as a policy adopted by the Lebanese government,” said Rashid Darbas, the Lebanese Minister of Social Affairs, on Monday as quoted by the media wing of the Christian Lebanese Forces party.

The announcement came after a meeting in the Lebanese government about the issue of Syrian refugees headed by Lebanese Prime Minister Tammam Salam.

More than 1.1 million Syrians have registered with the UN as refugees in Lebanon – a country of 4.3 million – since the beginning of the conflict. The actual number of Syrians could be even higher.

Refugees Tents Lebanon will no longer accept Syrian refugees. Photo courtesy of @eldorar1

Rebels eye Jordan border crossing

Local FSA-affiliated opposition groups seized a series of military checkpoints near the Jordanian-Syrian border in southern Daraa province Monday in preparation to attack the regime-held Nasib border crossing, reported pro-opposition news agency Daraa Media Outlet.

“The importance of the checkpoints is that they are the [main] line of defense for the Nasib border crossing – the last working border crossing between Syria and Jordan,” Abu Aws, a reporter for pro-opposition news outlet Syria Mubasher, told Syria Direct Tuesday.

Jabhat a-Nusra, which has a strong presence in Daraa, was not part of the attack.

Meanwhile, official state agency SANA said that “army units killed a number of terrorists in the countryside of Daraa” on Monday.

IS stones woman to death in Hama

Fighters with the Islamic State (IS) stoned a woman to death in the eastern outskirts of Hama province and uploaded the video to social media websites on Monday after the married woman allegedly committed adultery with an unknown man.

Islamic State fighters are seen in the video pleading with the woman’s father to forgive her. After his repeated refusals, IS elements commence the stoning.

A fighter tells the woman before her death, “you are the first person to have the punishment (hadd) of stoning for adultery enacted on them in this area.”

The date of the video could not be independently verified.

IS fighters stoned to death two women, both charged with adultery, in A-Raqqa province in July, reported the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

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