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The New Arab

Six militia members reportedly killed by Islamic State in eastern Syria

Islamic State carries out frequent attacks in eastern Syria [Getty]

Date of publication: 29 May, 2020

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Suspected IS militants have killed three members of the Syrian Democratic Forces ‘in a horrible way’ and three members of an Iran-backed militia in a mine explosion in eastern Syria

Three members of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and three members of an Afghan Shia militia sponsored by Iran were reportedly killed by the Islamic State (IS) extremist group in Deir al-Zour province in eastern Syria on Thursday.

The local “Deirezzor 24” news network said that the three SDF members were killed “in a horrible way” by suspected IS militants who slaughtered them with knives after attacking an SDF military customs post in northern Deir al-Zour province.

The SDF is the US’s main ally against IS in eastern Syria. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that US forces went to the site of the killing to investigate and look for fingerprints, and accused IS of responsibility.

On Friday morning airborne US forces made a landing in Deir al-Zour province and detained four Iraqis suspected of membership in IS.

Read also: Russian officer on trial after soldiers 'bribe him to be sent to Syria'

“Deirezzor 24” also reported that the three members of the Afghan “Fatemiyoun” militia were killed when a mine targeting them blew up in the desert near the town of Mayadeen southeast of Deir al-Zour city on Thursday.

In the city of Shadadi in Hasakah province in northeastern Syria, four children were injured when militants riding a motorbike threw a hand grenade at them.

IS were militarily defeated in Deir al-Zour province in March 2019 when their last stronghold, Baghouz, was captured by the SDF but have since regrouped in the Syrian desert.

The SDF control northern Deir al-Zour province while Iranian-backed militias have a heavy presence in regime-held areas in the south of the province. Both areas have been frequently attacked by IS recently.

On Thursday Syrian opposition sources told The New Arab’s Arabic service that the US and allied Syrian rebels may carry out a military operation against the Iranian militias in eastern Syria.

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