DAMASCUS, SYRIA (6:30 P.M.) – After mobilizing for a swift counter-offensive, Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) is slowly chipping away at the Islamic State’s newly emerged enclave in northeastern Hama, a pocket that threatens to expand into the Syrian Al-Qaeda heartland of neighbouring Idlib.
Brand new Go-Pro footage released by HTS on Monday shows one of its militants storming an ISIS-held building in the area, forcing four Islamic State members to surrender at gunpoint. Upon agreeing to give up their arms, they are all shot at point-blank range.
Viewer discretion is advised:
The incident is believed to have taken place on the outskirts of Rahajan, a village retaken by Al-Qaeda belligerents on Friday.
At the moment, ISIS militants control around 10 villages in northeastern Hama although an ongoing HTS counter-offensive is systematically reducing the pocket.
Once close allies under the Al-Qaeda banner, HTS (formerly known as Jabhat Al-Nusra) and ISIS have since become bitter jihadist rivals on the Syrian battlefield, cracking down on one another’s sleeper cells and executing POW’s without mercy.
An interactive battle map of the region can be found here.