ISIS seizes 400 civilians in eastern Syria

January 17, 2016, 8:30pm

Dpa on News24
Photo: iStock

Cairo - Islamic State fighters have abducted at least 400 civilians in eastern Syria after an attack by the militia in which at least 135 people were killed, a monitoring group reported on Sunday.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the jihadists had moved the seized people from the government-controlled village of al-Baghaliyeh, on the northern edge of Deir al-Zour city in eastern Syria, after a major attack on the area on Saturday.

"We fear that the 400 will be executed or enslaved by the organiSation on the pretext that they are loyal to the regime," the Observatory head, Rami Abdel-Rahman, told dpa.

The Britain-based watchdog reported late on Saturday that ISIS had launched an attack on al-Baghaliyeh and killed at least 85 civilians as well as 50 Syrian soldiers and allied paramilitaries.

Syria's state news agency SANA said "terrorists" had killed at least 300 civilians in al-Baghaylieh.

Islamic State controls most of the Deir al-Zour province and its capital city of the same name.

The al-Qaeda breakaway group has been besieging regime-held areas in the Deir al-Zour city for more than a year.

More than 250 000 people are estimated to have been killed in Syria's conflict since it started in 2011.