An ISIS attack on government forces in the Syrian Province of Hama at dawn on Thursday killed at least 50 and injured perhaps a hundred more in heavy fighting. News outlets are saying both that ISIS is firmly in control of the town of Aqareb al-Safi and that Syrian forces foiled the attack. At least 15 civilians are dead, executed by ISIS after they were captured.
The attack took place in villages along a strategic road that connects Hama city with Aleppo. Syrian news stated that the ISIS militants fled out into the desert when Government forces repelled the attack. Who is in actual control of the town is still unclear.
According to the BBC, ISIS has gained control of the town of Aqareb.
“The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said at least 15 of the dead were civilians…IS was now fully in control of Aqareb, SOHR said, adding that the government had sent reinforcements to the area.”
But Almanar news out of Lebanon reported,
T”he Syrian Army units, in cooperation with the popular defense groups, foiled an attack by ISIL terrorists on the village of Aqareb al-Safyieh in the eastern countryside of Hama central province.
SANA reporter said that army units in cooperation with the popular defense groups, engaged on Thursday in fierce clashes with ISIL-affiliated terrorist groups that infiltrated from the southern direction of Aqareb Safyieh village in the eastern countryside of Salamyieh.”
Reports of clashes occurring in other parts of the province remain, although the reports are sketchy and may not be reliable.
Map of eastern Hama today showing Islamic State advances after attack on Aqarib pic.twitter.com/F8C8gCLnc7
— John Arterbury (@JohnArterbury) May 18, 2017
46 civilians killed and over 100 injured in Aqrab in eastern #Hama countryside due to ISIS attack
— Within Syria (@WithinSyriaBlog) May 18, 2017
— Battle Analytics (@BattleAnalytics) May 18, 2017
— Independent (@freelaancenews) May 18, 2017
— Sputnik (@SputnikInt) May 18, 2017
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