Syrian Conflict: Islamic State Advance In Homs Province


Islamic State (IS) fighters have reportedly captured the Syrian town of Maheen, in central Homs Province, from government forces. They launched the offensive with two suicide car blasts late on Saturday, the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says.

Clashes were also taking place in nearby Sadad, a mostly-Christian town. The latest development comes amid air campaigns in Syria by Russia and a US-led coalition.

IS has been expanding from its mainly northern and eastern strongholds towards Homs in central Syria in recent months. The group overran the town of Tadmur – home to the ancient ruins of Palmyra – in May, and later took al-Qaryatain town in August.

The latest offensive on Maheen and Sadad brings IS to within 20km (13 miles) of the main road that links the Syrian capital Damascus to Homs and other cities further north.