DAMASCUS, SYRIA (9:05 P.M.) – On Friday, fierce clashes erupted across the eastern city of Deir Ezzor as ISIS unleashed several attacks on the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) which nevertheless punished renewed Islamic State aggression by inflicting heavy casualties.
In the morning hours, at least 10 ISIS militants were killed amid an attack targeting the highly fortified 137th Regiment army base. In addition, the SAA’s 104th Airborne Brigade of the Republican Guard – assisted by the 121st Artillery Regiment – also destroyed a mortar position along with a pickup truck fitted with a 23 mm gun.
A large second jihadist attack also unfolded at newly liberated points in the cemetery area and Al-Mowazafeen district where deadly trench warfare resulted in the death of around 30 ISIS insurgents in the afternoon hours.
Additionally, the SAA and National Defence Forces (NDF) targeted ISIS-held positions in the Huwyqah district and scored several direct hits although a military source debriefing Al-Masdar News on the situation could not specify the ISIS death toll on this axis.
The Russian and Syrian air forces were highly active over Deir Ezzor on Friday, conducting sorties at the cemetary area, Thardah Mountain, Taim Oil Fields and a handful of ISIS-held suburbs inside the provincial capital.
Meanwhile, UN-sponsored cargo planes dropped tons of food and supplies to besieged civilians in government-held Deir Ezzor, a residential area home to around 85,000 non-combattants whom are often caught in crossfire.
At 7:00 p.m this evening, a sandstorm swept across Deir Ezzor, thus grounding Russian and Syrian warplanes. ISIS often uses poor weather conditions to launch attacks; therefore, the SAA, NDF and pro-government tribal fighters are on high alert for overnight ISIS raids.