The so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says nearly three dozen people have lost their lives when members of the Daesh launched an attack against a camp for Iraqi refugees and displaced Syrians in the far northeastern corner of Syria on the border with neighboring Iraq.
The group reported that at least five assailants blew themselves up outside and inside the camp in the Rajm al-Salibeh area of the northeastern Syrian province of Hasakah on Tuesday, claiming the lives of at least 32 people.
The monitoring group’s chief Rami Abdel Rahman said fierce skirmishes then broke out between Daesh militants and members of the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a US-backed coalition of fighters who have seized swathes of territory from the Daesh terrorist group in northern Syria, leaving combatants from both sides dead.
Abdel Rahman added that at least 30 people also sustained injuries during the heavy exchange of gunfire, noting that the death toll may rise because some of the wounded victims are in a critical condition.
The London-based group went on to say that at least 21 of the dead were displaced Syrians or Iraqi refugees.
Founded in October 2015, the SDF is comprised mostly of Syrian Kurds, numbering at least 25,000. It receives equipment, weapons and air support from the US.
Washington has been sponsoring anti-Damascus groups operating in Syria by labeling them as moderate militants.
Ten soldiers slain in Daesh assault in western Iraq
Meanwhile, Daesh extremists have killed at least 10 soldiers in the western Iraqi province of Anbar after they carried out a surprise attack against government forces in the area.
A security source, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Daesh attacked a 1st Division base in the Saggar area, which lies east of Ar Rutba town and about 390 kilometers (240 miles) west of the capital Baghdad, using mortar rounds and rockets.
The source added that several militants armed with rifles then tried to storm it, prompting clashes that lasted two hours until 7:00 a.m. local time (0400 GMT).
Iraqi army soldiers and pro-government fighters from the Popular Mobilization Units, commonly known by the Arabic name Hashd al-Sha’abi, have made sweeping gains against the Daesh elements since launching the operation to retake Mosul.
The Iraqi forces took control of eastern Mosul in January after 100 days of fighting, and launched the battle in the west on February 19.
The United Nations says nearly half a million civilians have fled fighting since the offensive to retake Mosul started on October 17, 2016.
The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said on April 17 that 493,000 people had been displaced from the city, located some 400 kilometers north of Baghdad.
As many as 500,000 civilians are still trapped in the Daesh-controlled neighborhoods of western Mosul.