Islamic State fights Syrian army for gas field, kills 30: Monitor

 Islamic State militants in Syria killed at least 30 pro-government fighters in an assault on a gas field that has witnessed some of the bloodiest confrontations between the two sides, a monitoring group said on Wednesday. 

Beirut: Islamic State militants in Syria killed at least 30 pro-government fighters in an assault on a gas field that has witnessed some of the bloodiest confrontations between the two sides, a monitoring group said on Wednesday. 

Islamic State seized the Sha`ar gas field in July, killing some 350 government troops, allied militiamen, guards and staff, according to the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

Government forces recaptured the field, east of the central city of Homs, later that month.

In a new round of fighting on Tuesday, Islamic State seized three wells and killed at least 30 government and pro-government fighters, said the Observatory, which monitors violence in Syria through a network of sources. 

Clashes continued overnight, it said. 

Large-scale fighting between the Syrian government and Islamic State was relatively rare until the summer, when the Jihadists began seizing government positions, including a series of military bases in the northern Raqqa province. 

Fighting between the two has continued since U.S.-led forces began bombing Islamic State in Syria last month. The United States says it is not coordinating with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad`s forces. 

The Syrian government has concentrated many of its forces on fighting other rebel groups throughout the country including the al Qaeda-linked Nusra Front as well other groups considered more moderate and backed by the United States and its allies. 

Some 200,000 people have died in Syria`s conflict, which descended into civil war in 2011 after a government crackdown on a peaceful protest movement. 

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