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Suspected ISIS Ambush Kills Five Truffle Hunters in Syria's Homs Province

Gulan Media February 24, 2024 News
Suspected ISIS Ambush Kills Five Truffle Hunters in Syria's Homs Province

In a tragic incident, at least five individuals lost their lives in a suspected Islamic State (ISIS) ambush while participating in the traditional activity of truffle hunting in Syria's central Homs province. State media, citing a source from Homs police, reported that five civilians were fatally shot during the ambush in the Jab al-Jirah area of eastern Homs province. The assailants, reportedly riding a motorcycle, unleashed gunfire on the unsuspecting group of truffle hunters.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), a UK-based war monitor, provided further insight, indicating that the attack claimed the lives of six people, including a member of the regime forces. While ISIS has been implicated in the assault, no formal claim of responsibility has been made by any group thus far.

Despite warnings issued by authorities, many impoverished Syrians venture into the perilous Badia desert between February and April each year in search of truffles, a seasonal delicacy. However, the desert terrain, notorious for housing jihadists and littered with landmines, poses significant risks to those engaging in this activity.

According to SOHR, ISIS has executed approximately 50 operations in the Syrian desert this year alone, encompassing ambushes, armed assaults, and explosive incidents. The toll of these attacks includes the deaths of 101 members of the Syrian army and affiliated groups, along with ten civilians, including a child. Additionally, the Syrian army reported the neutralization of 17 ISIS militants in response to these aggressive maneuvers.

Since their territorial defeat in March 2019, following a military campaign led by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) with backing from a United States-led global coalition, ISIS militants have resorted to sporadic hit-and-run tactics, targeting both civilian and military entities aligned with the Syrian regime and the Kurdish-led authority in the northwest region of the country.

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