ISIL seizes parts of northeast Syria city Hasakeh
BEIRUT - Agence France-Presse
In this picture released on Wednesday, May 20, 2015 by the website of ISIL militants, an ISIL fighter fires his weapon during a battle against Syrian government forces on a road between Homs and Palmyra, Syria. AP PhotoIslamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) fighters entered the northeastern Syrian city of Hasakeh overnight, seizing two neighbourhoods from government forces in heavy clashes, a monitoring group said on June 25.
At least 30 regime loyalists and 20 ISIL jihadists were killed in the fighting, which continued into June 25 morning, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
The Britain-based group said the ISIL attack began late on June 24, 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 ISIL 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.
ISIL 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.