The Islamic State in Iraq and Sham (ISIS) released yesterday 11 captured militants from the Saudi-backed Jaysh al-Islam (Army of Islam) in southern Damascus suburbs in a prisoner swap that set 11 ISIS jihadis free as well.
The prisoners were captured in battles that broke out earlier in the southern outskirts.
According to local activists, the deal took place at the street separating Yalda from Yarmouk Refugee Camp where the families of militants detained by ISIS and senior leaders from Jaysh al-Islam gathered.
Among the released is a pro-rebel media activist.
Jaysh al-Islam, a major Islamist anti-government group, is in control of large swathes of the extensive Eastern Ghouta area where its militants are mainly fighting the Syrian Arab Army.
ISIS, on the other hand, retains minor enclaves in the area in bid to establish its de facto Caliphate.
Although sharing almost the same Islamic fundamentalist ideology, the two hard line groups are seen as foes; with each desperately seeking a self-proclaimed statelet.
Zahran Alloush, former commander of Jaysh al-Islam, was killed on December 25th in a Syrian airstrike that targeted a senior meeting for rebel leaders in Eastern Ghouta.