Islamic State (ISIS) militants launched a series of attacks against posts of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) near the city of Deir ez-Zur in north Syria after SDF officials announced they had neutralised a plot to free an estimated 5,000 captured ISIS members from the Sina’a prison in Hasakah, northeast Syria.
The SDF announcement said that one ISIS member was killed and another wounded in the operation on Monday as five were arrested and a large weapons cache and equipment was seized.
ISIS responded with a series of attacks starting late on Monday and a number of key SDF posts were reportedly targeted with rockets and gunfire.
According to the Rojava Information Centre, ISIS cells mounted at least four confirmed attacks in and around Busayrah, 30 km southeast of Deir ez-Zor. In one of the attacks, the local SDF headquarters was targeted with rockets and firearms, resulting in at least three injuries.
In three others, SDF bases and positions in al-Shahil, al-Thiba and al-Zar were also targeted, and while SDF forces suffered a handful of injuries, two ISIS operatives were captured.
Monday’s fighting between the SDF and IS comes as a US intelligence assessment has reportedly warned that ISIS, which is assumed to still command about 10,000 fighters across Syria and Iraq, has been ramping up its attacks.