Syria army repels jihadist advance on key air base
Syrian troops have repelled an attack by jihadists from the Islamic State group on a key military airport in the eastern Deir Ezzor province, a monitoring group said yesterday.
"Troops and pro-regime militia stopped the attack that Islamic State launched on the Deir Ezzor military airport," the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said, adding that both sides suffered heavy losses in the fighting.
The jihadists had withdrawn to the edges of the base, a day after managing to seize a southeastern part of the complex, it said.
The Observatory said more than 100 jihadists had been killed in fighting for the base since Wednesday, when they launched an operation to try to take the airport.
Pro-regime forces also suffered heavy casualties, with some 59 troops killed, it said.
State news agency SANA said Syrian army units had "repelled an attempt" by IS fighters to attack positions at the base, but provided no further details.