Regime warplanes target east Idlib
Regime warplanes targeted a group of civilians in the eastern Idlib countryside Wednesday, killing 10 and wounding 20, reportedly in revenge for recent rebel progress in Idlib province, reported pro-opposition AlSouria.
Binnish, which contains large numbers of displaced persons from areas across the province, was hit “in revenge for the rebels’ liberation of Idlib city and Jisr a-Shughour,” Jumaa al-Idlibi, the alias of a citizen journalist from Binnish, told Syria Direct Thursday.
In response to the bombing, rebels with Liwa al-Hussein, members of the Islamic Front, targeted the nearby Shiite-majority regime-controlled towns of Fuwaa and Kafariya with mortars, according to remarks made by a Liwa fighter that circulated online Wednesday.
Earlier this week, rebels took control of the al-Qarmeed brick factory, used as a makeshift base. In Idlib province, the regime now remains in control of the city of Ariha, the neighboring mountain region of Jabal al-Arbain, the al-Mastuma base, the Shiite-majority towns of Fuwaa and Kafariya, and the Abu A-Dhuhur airbase, besieged by rebels for more than two years.
Ahrar al-Sham shells Fuaa with the DIY “Hell Cannon”. Photo courtesy of Ahrar a-Sham.
IS fighters killed while preparing car bombs to attack Deir e-Zor city
An unintentional explosion in al-Mayadeen resulted in the deaths of several Islamic State fighters who were rigging cars with explosives for use in an assault on Deir e-Zor city, the director of the Deir e-Zor is Being Silently Slaughtered campaign told Syria Direct on Thursday.
“While IS fighters were outfitting several cars to use as car bombs, an accident occurred and the cars blew up, which caused approximately 30 casualties,” said Abu Mujahid al-Shami.
Al-Mayadeen is roughly 40km southeast of Deir e-Zor city, the provincial capital.
“The cars were being outfitted with bombs to be used in IS attacks against the regime on Saqer Island,” al-Shami said.
The only operational bridges connecting the eastern bank of the Euphrates river under IS control and regime territory in Deir e-Zor city run through the tiny Saqer Island.
“Whomever controls the island can control the city,” says al-Shami.
The regime’s elite 104 Republican Guard began fighting IS forces for control of the island in October.
IS attacks Nusra bases in western Daraa
Pro-Islamic State groups attacked several Jabhat a-Nusra bases in western Daraa on Wednesday, capturing one following fighting which resulted in dozens of casualties on both sides, reported the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
The pro-IS Martyrs of Yarmouk Brigade captured Sahem al-Golan, a Nusra stronghold in Daraa 10 kilometers from both the Jordanian border and the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, in addition to attacking Nusra forces in the villages of al-Hayt south of Sahem al-Golan.
The attack came in response to a campaign by a coalition of rebel factions, including Nusra, Islamist brigades, and the FSA’s Southern Army, to cleanse the adjacent Quneitra province of IS presence, which began earlier this week.
The Sharia Court of Houran, which issued a rebel call-to-arms against the IS presence in southern Syria on Tuesday, served as mediators in a grievance involving the Martyrs of Yarmouk Brigade last year.