IS Kills Scores in Central Syria Surprise Attack

Voice of America News reports: “Under siege in other parts of Syria, Islamic State forces staged a surprise attack Thursday on two government-held villages in central Syria’s Hama province that killed more than 50 people, according to media reports and sources in the region.

Fierce clashes between IS fighters and pro-Syrian government forces in the villages of Aqareb and Al-Mabujeh left at least 15 civilians and 27 pro-regime troops dead, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which has monitors in the area. IS suffered 15 casualties, the observatory said.

Syria’s state news agency put the death toll at 52, including 15 children. There were reports of IS militants torturing villagers and looting homes.

‘My friend lost four of his children after IS slaughtered them all,’ Maher Esber, a political activist from the area, told VOA. ‘We do not know if my friend is alive, but I saw the bodies of his children.’…”

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