On March 26, a fierce battle between Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) security forces, known as the General Security Agency, and a cell of ISIS took place in the town of Atimeh in northern Idlib along the Syrian-Turkish border.
The battle started when HTS security forces attempted to raid the hideout of the ISIS cell inside the town. The cell’s members showed fierce resistance.
Heavy clashes between HTS militants and the cell’s members lasted for five hours. In the end, the General Security Agency announced that it had neutralized the cell.
According to a report by the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the cell’s leader blew himself up. The other members of the cell were captured by HTS. The group didn’t lose any of its fighters.
Last week, HTS security forces naturalized a cell of ISIS after a series of raids in the town of Harim, also located on Turkey’s border, and in Idlib city. Two ISIS members, a militant of HTS and a civilian were killed.
HTS operations against ISIS cells are only meant to strengthen the group’s grip over the region of Greater Idlib. The group carried out larger attacks on Turkish-backed militants in the last few years.
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