ISIS has repeatedly launched unsuccessful attacks on the Deir Ezzor military airbase, the last significant Syrian military possession in the eastern province, and looks to be making another run, with mounting gains on the last 24 hours.
Reports from the area are that ISIS has seized some checkpoints around the area, and heavy fighting between ISIS and Syrian forces over the airport have left 34 combatants killed, 15 of them ISIS and 19 government soldiers.
ISIS has held the overwhelming majority of the Deir Ezzor Province for months, and much of the city of Deir Ezzor as well, but the military airbase on the city’s outskirts has eluded them. The base has been seen as a key aspect of the Syrian air war against ISIS.
The most recent reports from the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights are that ISIS has effectively surrounded the airport, but are coming under heavy fire from the planes themselves, which are keeping them back. They reported that the aerial defense commander of the base was killed, however.