The Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) launched a massive offensive inside the provincial capital of the Deir Ezzor Governorate on Saturday morning, targeting the Syrian Arab Army’s frontline defenses at the northwestern districts of Ayyash and Al-Bughayliyah near the western bank of the Euphrates River.
Initially, the ISIS terrorists were relatively successful during the onset of the offensive in the provincial capital, capturing several neighborhoods and government sites inside the Al-Bughayliyah and Ayyash Districts, including the Ayyash weapons storage depot and the Ayyash fuel station that are both located to the west of the Euphrates Hotel.
As a result of their initial success, several pro-ISIS and pro-rebel social media activists began to report that the Ayyash and Al-Bughayliyah Districts were captured by the terrorist group, despite conflicting reports from Syrian Arab Army sources inside this city in eastern Syria.
Under duress from the ISIS assault, the Syrian Arab Army’s 137th Artillery Brigade of the 17th Reserve Division called for reinforcements from the elite 104th Airborne Brigade of the Republican Guard to help them drive out the terrorists attacking their positions in the northwestern section of the city.
Not long after their arrival, the Syrian Arab Army’s 104th Airborne Brigade – alongside the 137th Artillery Brigade and the National Defense Forces (NDF) – beat back the encroaching ISIS terrorists, seizing the Ayyash weapons storage depot and the neighborhoods lost in the Al-Bughayliyah District.
Sadly, as the Syrian Armed Forces recaptured the neighborhoods they lost to ISIS in the Al-Bughayliyah District, they found over 280 civilians slain by the terrorist group before they fled the scene of this horrific crime.
The massacred civilians had been reportedly murdered for having “ties to the regime”; meaning, many of these civilians were relatives of an SAA or NDF soldier.
In addition to repelling ISIS at Ayyash and Al-Bughayliyah, the Syrian Armed Forces also repelled the terrorist group at the 137th Artillery Brigade’s Headquarters in Jabal Al-Thardeh.
According to a military source in Deir Ezzor, the Syrian Armed Forces lost a total of 49 soldiers during ISIS’ offensive – the source was unable to confirm ISIS’ death toll.