| 26 September 2022, Monday |

Syria prison battle toll tops 150, concern over fate of minors

Kurdish troops surrounded a Syrian city on Monday to apprehend Daesh terrorists who raided a jail there five days ago, killing more than 150 people in brutal clashes.

The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) accused Daesh extremists of deploying hundreds of youngsters as “human shields” inside the Ghwayran jail in Hasakah, northeastern Syria.

UNICEF, the UN children’s agency, has urged for the safety of the 850 juveniles incarcerated within the jail, some of whom are as young as 12, warning that they might be “harmed or forcefully recruited” by Daesh.

More than 100 Daesh members assaulted Ghwayran jail late Thursday, using suicide vehicle bombings and heavy weaponry, sparking days of fighting both within and outside the facility.
The combat ceased Sunday evening, when the US-backed SDF took control of the region around the jail and proclaimed the entire city closed for a week.
“To prevent terrorist cells from escaping… the Kurdish administration in northeast Syria announces a seven-day comprehensive lockdown on regions within and outside Hasakah city beginning January 24,” the government announced.
Businesses, with the exception of vital services such as medical institutions, bakeries, and gasoline delivery centers, were forced to close.

According to an AFP journalist, civilians were hunkering down in their houses on Monday while Kurdish troops supported by the US-led coalition probed the region for hidden jihadists.

The SDF built many checkpoints at Hasakah’s gates, with even stricter security measures applied in communities near to the penitentiary, according to the reporter.

The SDF stated in a statement that its progress inside the jail had been hampered by Daesh militants holed up in a dormitory using hundreds of youngsters as “human shields.”

The teenagers, who had been imprisoned for alleged ties to radicals, were being held in the jail’s “rehabilitation facility,” according to the organization.

According to the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a dangerous pause in warfare has persisted as stubborn extremists refuse to surrender.

According to the organization, 154 people have been dead in the confrontations since Thursday, including 102 extremists, 45 Kurdish fighters, and seven civilians.

A nighttime curfew was expected to go into effect Monday in other portions of Syria’s northeast under the administration’s authority, from 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.

  • Arab News