A monitoring group that tracks violence in Syria said on Tuesday that Islamic State militants have abducted at least 90 people from various Assyrian Christian villages in northeastern Syria.
The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the militants carried out dawn raids on rural villages inhabited by the ancient Christian minority west of Hasaka, a city mainly held by the Kurds.
Syrian Kurdish militia launched two offensives against the militants in northeast Syria on Sunday, helped by U.S.-led air strikes and Iraqi Peshmerga.
This part of Syria is strategically important in the fight against the Islamic State because it borders territory controlled by ISIL in Iraq where last year it committed atrocities against the minority religious Yazidi community.
Sunday’s offensive by Kurdish YPG militia reached within 3 miles of Tel Hamis, an Islamic State controlled town south east of Qamishli, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
At least 14 IS fighters died in the offensive, which involved Assyrian fighters. Eight civilians were also killed in heavy shelling by the Kurdish side which seized several Arab villages from Islamic State control.
Report compiled with information from Reuters
George Stifo of Assyrian Democratic Org. discusses Syrian kidnappings
CCTV America interviewed George Stifo on this issue. He’s the U.S. Branch President for the Assyrian Democratic Organization.