DAYRO ZCURO (DEIR EZ-ZOR), Syria — On Friday, local news agency Ayn al-Furat reported that more than 30 members of the Syrian regime-aligned militias of the National Defense Forces (NDF) in stationed in Al-Ashara and Al-Mayadeen, east of Dayro Zcuro (Deir ez-Zor), fled to areas controlled by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) after an increase of Islamic State (ISIS) attacks against them.
Informed sources have now reported that more than 125 members of the NDF have defected and surrendered the SDF.
There has been an increase in the frequency and complexity of Islamic State attacks west of the Euphrates in recent weeks. Last week, a group of ISIS fighters conducted the first anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) attack on Syrian regime positions in Deir ez-Zor in nearly a year. ISIS published a video of the attack via one of its media outlets.
According to the sources, recent attacks by ISIS on regime military positions in Dayro Zcuro have killed dozens of NDF fighters.
The regime is currently organizing forces for a large-scale security operation in the Syrian desert (Badia) where many ISIS cells have used as a launching point for attacks on regime forces. NDF militias will likely be used to augment the stretched thing Syrian regular army, prompting some members of the NDF to flee towards the SDF territory to avoid taking part in the operation.