Belfast Telegraph

Friday 26 December 2014

Isis takes key Syrian oil field

Isis is said to have captured a key oil field in Syria (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali)
Isis is said to have captured a key oil field in Syria (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali)

Activists say fighters from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isis) have taken control of Syria's largest oil field, near the border with Iraq.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the extremist group has captured al-Omar oil field in eastern Deir el-Zour province after fighters belonging to a rival group, the al Qaida-linked Nusra Front, left without firing a bullet.

The al-Omar field has changed hands several times in the course of Syria's three-year conflict. The Nusra Front and several other Islamic factions captured it from forces loyal to president Bashar Assad in November.

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant has seized a large expanse of territory in Syria and neighbouring Iraq, and has declared the establishment of an Islamic state astride the border.

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