Heavy fighting was reported in northeastern Syria today, as ISIS forces drew to within 500 meters of the gates of Hasakeh, the major city in Syria’s West Kurdistan. The city is being mutually defended by Kurdish YPG fighters and the Syrian military.
Hasakeh is an important part of Syria’s oil producing region, as well as the provincial capital of its own province. ISIS has been fighting over Assyrian villages in the area around the city in recent weeks, taking several of them to set the stage for the assault on the city.
Details on the fighting for the city are scant, so far, but reportedly ISIS set off a car bomb near a Syrian military position on the outskirts of the city. Locals also report all electricity and communications in the city have been cut off by the siege.
ISIS is estimated to control over half of Syria now, and taking Hasakeh would be a huge step toward them wrapping up the campaign in eastern Syria, and being able to concentrate, inside the country at least, entirely on their western front in the Homs and Aleppo Provinces.