A prison break involving the Islamic State terrorist group’s gunmen and car bombs in Syria, the organization’s biggest offensive in years, may herald its resurgence fueled by fighters further radicalized in the region’s appalling jails, experts warn.
The Gweiran prison in Hassakeh in northeast Syria is under siege after the ISIS assault Thursday, its fighters holed up inside and the building surrounded by the Kurdish-led, U.S.-allied Syrian Democratic Forces. Intense fighting has been reported in civilian areas nearby where some escapees are said to have fled.
According to the SDF, the prison holds between 3,000 and 4,000 ISIS prisoners, including foreigners and hundreds of children. Between 400 and 500 prisoners escaped initially but “most” had been recaptured, a spokesman said without elaborating.