Syrian Democratic Forces arrest 2 ISIS suspects in Deir al-Zor

SDF units recently arrested 2 ISIS suspects in Syria's Deir al-Zor. (Photo: SDF Press)
SDF units recently arrested 2 ISIS suspects in Syria's Deir al-Zor. (Photo: SDF Press)

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) - The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) announced on Monday that they had arrested two suspected ISIS members in the eastern Syrian city of Deir al-Zor.

“The Counter-terrorism units have arrested two Daesh (ISIS) terrorists who participated in several terrorist operations targeting our forces and civilians in Deir Ezzor in the Jadeed Akedat town, the eastern countryside of Deir Ezzor,” the SDF said in a statement released to the press.

The SDF added their operation was made possible by air support provided by the US-led Coalition to Defeat ISIS.

“Over the past two days, the Units have swept large areas of the town to clear them from the terrorist cells that targeted a patrol of our forces two days ago,” the statement read. “Furthermore, identification papers and documents were confiscated during the operation,” the SDF statement added.

According to the Syria-based Rojava Information Center (RIC), an SDF patrol was targeted by unknown gunmen in Jadeed Akedat on Sunday, resulting in the death of three conducting the patrol.

Injured SDF members were reportedly “taken for treatment at the US base at Omar Oil Field.”

Although the SDF and the coalition announced the territorial defeat of ISIS in Syria in March 2019, sleeper cell attacks persist in what appears to be a deliberate campaign to destabilize northeastern parts of the nation, primarily in cities, towns, and rural tracts of land once under the extremist group’s control.

The RIC said in a recent monthly report on ISIS sleeper cell attacks in northeast Syria that seven of the 12 sleeper cell attacks in the month of July were carried out in Deir al-Zor. Four other attacks were in Raqqa and the remaining one occurred in Qamishlo, located in Hasakah province on the Turkish border.

“Since RIC started reporting on sleeper cell attacks in March 2019, after ISIS’ territorial defeat in Baghouz, the number of attacks has never been as low as this month,” wrote the RIC. 

“Since May, attacks have halved each month, going from 42 in May to 24 in June and down to 12 in July.”

Editing by John J. Catherine