IS har erobret mellom 50-90 % av den palestinske flyktningleiren Yarmouk som ligger i den sørlige del av Damaskus. Assad-regimet er blitt skremt nok til at det har levert våpen til palestinske militser som de vanligvis er i krig med.
Det sier noe om alvoret i situasjonen. IS har kunnet rykke frem etter å ha inngått allianse med den konkurrerende Nusra-fronten.
IS la lørdag ut bilder av palestinske militsmenn de hadde halshogd, blant dem en kjent Hamas-kommandant.
The London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) watchdog group said the Islamist group has taken over 90% of Yarmouk, on the southern edge of the Syrian capital.
The Financial Times cited activists who said that the jihadi group may succeed in cementing a foothold in the Syrian capital, thus increasing pressure on President Bashar al-Assad.
ISIS supporters have reportedly posted pictures of fighters beheaded by the jihadi group during the battle.
“Reports of kidnappings, beheadings and mass killings are coming out from Al-Yarmouk,” said Saeb Erekat, an member of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation’s executive committee, Saturday evening. “The priority must be to save the Palestinian refugees in the camp by creating a safe passage for them out of the death trap that Al-Yarmouk has become.”
The main group fighting ISIS inside the camp is Aknaf Beit al-Makdis, an offshoot of Hamas. Two opposition sources told the Financial Times the Syrian army had allowed a Palestinian militia allied to Assad’s forces to send weapons to the Hamas offshoot fighting in Yarmouk.
“It’s an extremely rare thing for the government to do anything even remotely co-operating with the opposition,” said one activist. “That shows you how desperate the regime is to stop ISIS from having gateway right to heart of the capital for car bombs or whatever other atrocities.”
Among the Palestinian Arab fighters beheaded by the Islamic State terrorist group (ISIS) in Damascus’s Yarmouk camp was a senior Hamas figure in Syria, according to emerging reports.
On Saturday, senior Israel Arab journalist Khaled Abu Toumeh posted a graphic image which appeared to show the severed head of Sheikh Abu Salah Taha, held aloft by an ISIS fighter in Yarmouk.
ISIS has been involved in fierce clashes inside the camp since Wednesday, as it seeks to wrest control of it from Palestinian Islamist rebels aligned with Hamas.