Al-Hasakah province: SOHR sources have reported hearing explosions in Al-Hasakah city due to airstrikes by International Coalition aircraft on ISIS hideouts nearby Al-Sina’a prison in Ghuwayran neighbourhood in Al-Hasakah city however, no casualties have been reported so far.
Meanwhile, SOHR activists have documented the death of six ISIS members in the heavy machinegun fire by a Coalition helicopter earlier this evening, which targeted a group of foreign ISIS members in the area between Ghuwayran cemetery and Al-Isfinj street in Al-Hasakah city.
Accordingly, the total death toll since the start of Ghuwayran prison break on January 20 evening has reached 187: 130 ISIS fighters, seven civilians and 50 members of Asayish Forces, prison guards, counter-terrorism forces and SDF.
According to SOHR sources, the military forces have not inspected yet the quarters of the prison’s northern section where ISIS fighters were holed up. Moreover, the neighbourhoods around the prison have not been completely secured, where ISIS members are expected to be hidden there, especially since these neighbourhoods are free of people, as the residents have been displaced to other areas.
A few hours ago, Syrian Observatory sources reported that ISIS prisoners, who were refusing to surrender and holed up in a basement in a dormitory in Ghuwayran prison in Al-Hasakah city, surrendered after being starving.
However, the military forces did not imposed full control over the entire prison, as there were dormitories and wings that were not combed, where they were expected to include some ISIS cells and prisoners. Meanwhile, sporadic gunfire was heard in the region.
This development coincided with the seventh anniversary of the liberation of Ain Al-Arab (Kobani).
The most prominent questions that arise are what is the fate of ISIS escapees? How many are they? Where did they go? And what is their fate?!
SOHR sources had reported mass surrender in “Al-Sina’a / Ghuwayran prison” as large groups of ISIS prisoners left the prison’s quarters and sections where they were holed up, including the last section which included ISIS gunmen, and handed themselves in to the SDF-backed formations participating in the military operation in the prison.
Accordingly, the number of ISIS prisoners and fighters who have been surrendered so far approximates 2,000, and this number is expected to rise further as the operation is still underway.
On the other hand, SOHR sources confirmed that a few ISIS gunmen were insisting on fighting to the death and refusing to surrender or go out of a basement inside the prison.
SOHR sources reported earlier that tense calm prevailed inside Ghuwayran / Al-Sina’a prison in Al-Hasakah city, amid the ongoing surrender of ISIS prisoners who handed themselves over to the military forces.
The number of prisoners who surrendered in the past three days has risen to 1,100 prisoners, including children of the “Caliphate Cubs”. The total number also included 200 prisoners who managed to escape from the building where ISIS fighters holed up inside the prison, raising white flags.
On the other hand, inspection continued in other sections and quarters in the prison, amid combing operations in the surrounding areas in search for ISIS cells, especially in Al-Zuhour and Ghuwayran neighbourhoods.
SOHR sources added that the operation of regaining control of the prison was expected to reach an end in a few hours. However, the destiny of a large number of fugitive ISIS prisoners, whose number was not identified, remained unknown.
Earlier today, reliable SOHR sources confirmed that the military forces managed to free 17 combatants and employees of Ghuwayran prison yesterday. These people were taken hostages by ISIS members inside the prison, while most of them had appeared in the video footage circulated by ISIS. Accordingly, the number of hostages freed in the past two days rose to 32 people. However, there were other people held hostages by ISIS inside the prison. The recently-freed hostages confirmed that most of the ISIS members who attacked the prison were of Arab and foreign nationalities, according to SOHR sources.
On the other hand, military forces continued inspection and combing operations in the quarters of Ghuwayran prison, Al-Zuhour neighbourhood and other areas around the prison, amid sporadic clashes with ISIS members and cells, as ISIS gunmen refused to surrender. It is worth noting that the operations in the past few hours left more casualties on both sides.
Accordingly, the total death toll since the start of Ghuwayran prison break on January 20 evening reached 181: 124 ISIS fighters, seven civilians and 50 members of Asayish Forces, prison guards, counter-terrorism forces and SDF.
Yesterday, Observatory sources reported that military forces fully controlled one building out of five buildings of the prison, while the prisoners were evacuated from this building. Accordingly, the number of ISIS prisoners who were transported from the prison rose to 650, amid ongoing efforts by military forces to control other ISIS-free buildings, which experienced disobedience by unarmed prisoners.