Daesh blast kills more than 75 in eastern Syria

At least 75 displaced civilians have been killed after a car bomb exploded in Syria’s eastern province of Deir Ez-Zor on Saturday, according to the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

The attack, which took place one day after the Syrian army wrestled control of most of the region, also injured some 140 refugees gathering on the east side of the Euphrates River. The blast took place between the Conoco and Jafra energy fields; an area controlled by the US-backed, Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

Daesh is currently battling both the Russian allied Syrian regime, and the SDF in separate offensives in the region.

Whilst the group has lost vast swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq in recent months, the scale of the incident indicates that it still has the ability to mount deadly attacks.

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The Syrian army launched its attack against Daesh fighters in Deir Ez-Zor in September, fighting alongside Iran-backed militias and the Lebanese group Hezbollah, and backed by Russian air strikes.

Daesh held most of the city since 2014, except for one large pocket where Syrian regime troops and 93,000 civilians had been fighting from for three years.

Fighting across the Deir Ez-Zor province has sent thousands of civilians fleeing for their lives, some forced into the desert as they try to escape the violence. International NGO Save the Children estimates that some 350,000 people have fled the oil-rich province, half of whom are children.

Despite being driven out of large parts of Deir Ez-Zor, Daesh still controls over a third of the area with many of its fighters being deployed on the eastern side. The US-led coalition estimates that around 1,500 jihadists are still in the region.

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