ISIS Suffers Heavy Casualties in Deir Ezzor; Syrian Army Destroys 2 Tunnels

Originally posted on Friends of Syria:

The Syrian Arab Army’s 104th Airborne Brigade of the Republican Guard has killed over 120 Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) militants since Wednesday on Sakr Island (Hajeewa Sakr) in the Deir Ezzor Governorate. The 104th Brigade has taken control of most of the island, with 90 percent of the territory now under their helm since the capture of a strategic checkpoint earlier this week. ISIS has been unable to reinforce their entrenched fighters in the northern part of Sakr Island as the 104th Brigade has control over the two imperative suspension bridges linking the island to the mainland.

Identified ISIS fighters killed since Wednesday:

1. Hassan Mohammad As’ad (Syrian from Deir Ezzor)
2. Shamir Bassaam (Syrian from Deir Ezzor)
3. Yasseen Basheer (Syrian from Deir Ezzor)
4. Raghab Ahmad ‘Ali (Syrian from Ar-Raqqa)
5. Lu’ayy ‘Uthman (Syrian)
6. Khaldoun Rafeeq (Syrian)

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Syrian Army at the Gates of Khan Sheikhoun; Offensive in Al-Amariyya in Full Swing

Originally posted on Friends of Syria:

The Syrian Arab Army’s offensive in southern Aleppo (at Al-‘Amariyya) is in full swing after bombarding Islamic Front (Jabhat Al-Islamiyya) positions near the Sheikh Sa’eed District. Earlier today, the SAA, backed by the National Defense Forces (NDF), captured the surrounding farms (Mazra’a Al-‘Amariyya) in northern Al-‘Amariyya, killing scores of Islamic Front fighters and destroying two vehicles loaded with doshkas. The SAA will attempt to capture Al-‘Amariyya in order to open a new supply route to troops entrenched in Aleppo.

Yesterday, as of 10:30 P.M. Damascus Time, the Syrian Arab Army’s (SAA) 11th Tank Division is approximately 400 meters from the entrance to the imperative village of Khan Sheikhoun in the Idlib Governorate. The success in Hama has rebirthed the SAA’s presence in southern Idlib – an area they were forced to retreat from in May of 2014.

Elsewhere, the SAA killed scores of…

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ISIL Terrorists Using Chemical Weapons in Kobani

Originally posted on Friends of Syria:

ISIL militants have used chemical weapons in Kobani, Kurdish fighters who are defending the Syrian city against the Takfiri terrorists say.

Kurdish officials and doctors said on Wednesday that the terrorists released a sort of toxic gas in the eastern side of the Kurdish city late on Tuesday.

ISIL militants

Aysa Abdullah, a senior Kurdish official based in Kobani, said the victims had symptoms that included dizziness and watery eyes and that there was no equipment to precisely determine what kinds of chemicals had been used.

Other reports said the victims were transferred to a hospital in neighboring Turkey.

Many have joined the ISIL from Iraq’s former Baathist regime, highly skilled at using chemical weapons.

The Baathists are led by Izzat Ibrahim, the henchman of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.

The ISIL terrorists have been committing heinous crimes in the captured areas, including mass executions and beheading of people.


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ISIS Launches an Attack on Al-Sina’a in Deir Ezzor; SAA Continues Offensive on Sakr Island

Earlier today, the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) attacked the Syrian Arab Army’s 104th Airborne Brigade of the Republican Guard at the Al-Sina’a Quarter in Deir Ezzor City, attempting to infiltrate from the east. The attacked was repelled by the 104th Brigade, resulting in the death of 23 militants from ISIS (var. ISIL). Among the dead ISIS fighters was the leader of the Al-Ansar Brigades, Zakaria Al-‘Aboush; he was a former member of Free Syrian Army.

Al-Sina’a is the industrial quarter of Deir Ezzor City that was besieged in late August by ISIS – the attack was repulsed, with the 104th retaking lost ground. Opposition sources reported that ISIS broke through the SAA’s frontline defenses; however, this was denied by a military source in Deir Ezzor.

The ISIS militants identified among the dead:

1. Hani Faysal Ahmad Al-Hayo
2. ‘Ali Malaa Al-‘Abid
3. Ahmad Zaher
The 104th Airborne Brigade is on the offensive in Haweeja Sakr (Sakr Island), taking control of another ISIS den located southeast of the SAA’s initial attack. Brigadier General Issam Zahreddine is leading the attack on Sakr Island as his troops aim to build a buffer between ISIS militants and the Old Military Airport District in Deir Ezzor. According to a military source, over 60 ISIS fighters were killed since Saturday night, including a field commander named “’Abdel-Wadood”.

ISIS fighters identified in Hajeewa Sakr:

1. Fouad Sattam
2. Yasser Subhi ‘Abdullah
3. Jamaal ‘Abdel-Majeed Mohammad
4. ‘Ali Moussa
5. Ballah Nasser
6. Hamada Wahaab Al-Mustafa
7. ‘Umar ‘Abdel-Latif Al-‘Abdullah
8. Khalid Manaf Mansour
9. Majd Nouraldeen Al-Anwar
10. ‘Anas Talib Al-Heewani
11. Zi’ad Ayoub ‘Issa


Young Pakistani Woman Stoned To Death For Having A Cell Phone


By: Asian Human Rights Commission


Arifa, a mother of two, has been stoned to death on the orders of Panchayat (a tribal court) for possessing a cell phone. She was executed on 11 July in the district of Dera Ghazi Khan in Punjab province. The victim was stoned to death by her uncle and relatives on the orders of Panchayat after she was found to have a mobile phone.

According to media reports her uncle, cousins and other relatives threw stones and bricks at her until she died. She was buried without informing anyone. Police registered a First Information Report (FIR) against the Panchayat but no one has been arrested. She was buried in a desert far away from her village and nobody (not even her children) was allowed to participate in the funeral. Her husband is unknown.

Women are often victimized by these illegal judicial systems. This incident is a demonstration of the strong patriarchal society in Pakistan, and women are forced to remain in their clutches. Because of the absence of a proper criminal justice system, the powerful sections of society have complete impunity when they enforce their will.

The incident is a clear reflection of the total collapse of the rule of law in the country, where every section of the government has become utterly redundant in the face of tribal, feudal and religious traditions. The local police have not arrested the members of the Panchayat because the power in the area lies with the landed aristocracy.

Stoning to death is a barbaric act from a primitive society. Society is sent the message that violence is the way to deal with women and other vulnerable groups. Women’s rights are negated through the use of these forms of punishment.

Pakistani society has degenerated to the point that, for a woman, keeping a cell phone has become serious crime. It is treated as a worse crime than gang rape, murder and bomb blasts, through which many people are killed on a daily basis.

The Panchayat is an illegal judicial system run by feudal lords and tribal leaders. It is common in rural areas of Punjab, where landed aristocracy and centuries old tribal traditions rule. These practices are commonly used against women so that their tribal norms remain pure and intact. The Panchayat system is so powerful that the ‘independent judiciary’ still has not shown the courage to declare it illegal. The Pakistani judiciary, which got its independence after a people’s movement of two years, is much more involved in taking cases against elected government officials in order to keep its popularity in the media, while failing to introduce judicial reforms at the grassroots level, which has generated a society without any base on the rule of law.

What Arifa’s death shows us is the real system of justice in many parts of Pakistan. Local ruling is done by feudal bodies with complete impunity. There is no enforcement of the law by the judiciary, police or any other governing institution. It is more than the absence of the rule of law; it is an airless vacuum claiming many victims, in which the police – charged with the duty of enforcing the law – are hired thugs who torture and detain people at the request of powerful parties, please see the cases of two sisters, murdered in June 2013, 25 days apart, for daring to ask the courts for justice.

In Arifa’s case, it is those same corrupt police officers who are now being asked to investigate. Without serious intervention from government authorities, her case will be treated the same as far too many innocent deaths have been; uninvestigated, with complete impunity for the perpetrators.

The Panchayat, Jirga and other illegal ‘judicial systems’ can easily be used by grudge informers and powerful persons to obtain ‘death penalties’ to murder whomsoever they want to. Bizarre charges can be tried and people are executed through these systems. There is rarely any intervention by the police to stop them because the police, as mentioned above, play a particular part in the real legal system that operates in many parts of Pakistan.

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) urges the parliament to legislate against the illegal tribal courts, including the Jirga, Panchayat and Bradari judicial systems. The government must immediately investigate and arrest all the members of the Panchayat for ordering the murder of a woman on the charges of possessing a cell phone. The senior police officers for the district of Dera Ghazi Khan should also be prosecuted for aiding and abetting this heinous crime and neglecting their duty to investigate this case. The upper judiciary, particularly the Supreme Court of Pakistan, must take immediate action against illegal and parallel judicial systems and the killing of innocent people



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