Middle East

Jihadists behead Sunni tribesmen in Syria: monitor

Rebel fighters carry their weapons as they head towards their positions at Karm al-Tarab frontline in Aleppo July 30, 2014.REUTERS/Hamid Khatib

BEIRUT: Islamic State jihadists beheaded three fighters from a Sunni tribe that is battling the extremist group in eastern Syria, a monitor said on Tuesday.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the group had decapitated the men and put their heads on display in Jerthe a day after seizing the town in Deir Ezzor province.

The fighters are from the Sunni Shaitat tribe, which has been clashing with the Islamic State for nearly a week in parts of the oil-rich province, after a deal between the two sides collapsed.

The IS has captured most of Deir Ezzor and declared it to be part of its "caliphate," along with large swathes of territory it has captured across the border in Iraq.

The Observatory said Syrian regime planes carried out raids against the IS in Jerthe and near the town of Baseera, killing five members of the group on Tuesday.

Elsewhere, the monitoring group also said the toll in regime air raids around the capital on Sunday night had risen to 64.

The raids killed 38 people, among them six children, in Kfar Batna east of Damascus, and 26 people, including five children, in Douma, northeast of the capital.

Both strikes hit markets, the Britain-based group said.

More than 170,000 people have been killed in Syria since the country's conflict began in March 2011.





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