ISIS has attacked several Shi’ite villages in the Hama Province today, focusing on areas along the road that connects Damascus to Aleppo. The offensives saw some fighting, but ISIS mostly overran the areas with little resistance, and killed large numbers of civilians.
At least 53 people were killed, at least 25 civilians, and Syrian medical officials reported that many of them were children, and that some of them were beheaded by ISIS forces. 40 other people were reported wounded, in Syrian state media.
ISIS claimed the death toll was even higher, with their Aamaq news agency claiming that they’d killed at least 100 people, identifying them as all Alawites. Media reports from elsewhere suggest the targeted villages were Shi’ites, but not specifically Alawites.
It’s not unusual for ISIS to kill Shi’te civilians in general, considering them both religious apostates and enemies of the Caliphate. As with most of the religious minorities ISIS has been targeting, painting them as an enemy has become self-fulfilling, as such groups are overwhelmingly against ISIS.