ISIS Loses Key Syria-Iraq Border Crossing to Free Syria Army Offensive

Islamic State media deny reports of advances by the Free Syria Army into territory held by ISIS since May 2015.

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Free Syrian Army fighters hold their weapons in the suburb of Raqqa, eastern Syria September 13, 2013.
Free Syrian Army fighters hold their weapons in the suburb of Raqqa, eastern Syria September 13, 2013. Credit: Reuters

A Free Syrian Army faction seized control of the Syrian side of a major Syria-Iraq border crossing from the Islamic State group Friday night, as ISIS fighters engaged government forces in the center of the country, killing at least 15 soldiers.

The Local Coordination Committees' network of opposition activists in Syria reported Saturday that fighters belonging to the FSA Southern Front and reportedly supported by the United States killed one ISIS fighter and injured several others in the process of taking the Tanaf border crossing.

According to the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the FSA fighters crossed into Syria from Jordan to launch the attack.

The ISIS-affiliated Aamaq News Agency denied the reports. The ISIS group had controlled the crossing, located in Homs province in southeast Syria, since government forces withdrew in May 2015.

ISIS fighters meanwhile attacked the government's supply route to the contested northern city of Aleppo killing between 15 and 20 soldiers, according to various reports. Government forces repelled the attack and secured the road, according to the Observatory and SANA, the Syrian state news agency.

SANA reported government forces killed dozens of ISIS fighters in the clashes.

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