2 days ago, ISIS forces attacked several government checkpoints and areas in eastern Damascus. While they were mostly repelled by government soldiers, they did manage to capture the Badia Cement Factory which was still operational at the time.
While some 500 workers were working at the factory, only were kidnapped 300 by ISIS. However, the abducted Syrian workers were predominately from minorities; Druze, Alawites, Christians and Ismaelis. While some Sunnis were also taken, it was only those whom the ISIS fighters deemed to be “pro-regime”.
Nevertheless, breaking reports from al-Mayadeen indicate that 140 workers have already escaped ISIS captivity moments ago. Al-Masdar News is not independently able to verify this, although it might very well be true.
Furthermore, locals based in nearby rebel-held Jayroud said they had seen an ISIS convoy on the eastern outskirts of the town. Inside were an estimated 125 captives, likely to be the workers from Badia Cement Factory. They were headed northwards in direction of al-Busayri in the eastern desert of Homs governorate.
Meanwhile, Syrian Arab Army officials have said they intend to conduct a rescue mission to recover the civilians. However, with reportedly moving the captives to ‘secure’ ISIS-areas, their fate is yet to be determined.