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ISIS seizes parts of Syria’s Hasakeh

ISIS fighters entered the northeastern Syrian city of Hasakeh overnight, seizing two neighborhoods from government forces

Published: Updated:

Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group fighters entered the northeastern Syrian city of Hasakeh overnight, seizing two neighborhoods from government forces in heavy clashes, a monitoring group said on Thursday.

At least 30 regime loyalists and 20 ISIS jihadists were killed in the fighting, which continued into Thursday morning, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

The Britain-based group said the ISIS attack began late on Wednesday, with the jihadist group using at least one suicide bomber against a militia checkpoint during its advance.

"Heavy fighting is continuing, with shelling by both sides," Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman said.

He said ISIS had taken control of two southern districts of the city.

"Civilians in those areas and nearby are fleeing to the northern parts of the city," he added.

Control of Hasakeh, a provincial capital, is divided between Kurdish militia and government loyalists.

Kurdish forces are mostly present in the city's north and northwest.

ISIS has sought repeatedly to enter Hasakeh, including earlier this month when it advanced to the southern outskirts of the city before regime forces pushed it back in heavy fighting.