BEIRUT, September 16 (RIA Novosti) - The Syrian Army has killed 37 Islamic State (IS) militants in the northeastern province Deir al-Zor, Lebanese TV channel Al-Manar reported on Tuesday.
According to media reports, the militants were killed during an offensive, launched by Syrian government forces in al-Arfi region. Fierce fighting caused the collapse of several buildings where the extremists were hiding.
After several days of continuous fighting, and the liberation of the city of Al-Bukamal in Deir al-Zor province, most Islamic State field commanders retreated to the Syria-Iraq border.
The Islamic Group militants have been attempting to seize a Syrian air base in Deir al-Zor since early September. However after the Syrian army destroyed a strategically important bridge on Monday, the position of the government forces has improved.
The IS, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) or Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), has been fighting the Syrian government since 2012. In June 2014, it launched an offensive in Iraq and seized vast areas in both countries, proclaiming an Islamic caliphate on the territories under its control.