Curfew Introduced in Hasakah After Islamic State Prison Attack Sparks Fighting

A curfew was announced for the north-eastern Syrian city of Hasakah as intense fighting between Islamic State (IS) fighters and Kurdish-led forces continued into its fourth day on Sunday, January 23.

The Interior Board of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES) said the curfew in Hasakah would start on Monday and last for seven days.

On Thursday, IS militants attacked Gweiran Prison, where thousands of IS members have reportedly been held since the group’s defeat in Syria in 2019.

Reports citing the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) said at least 160 suspected militants and 27 members of the U.S.-backed force had been killed in the attack.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said between 500 and 600 IS members now remain in the prison and are holding dozens of hostages, including prison staff.

UNICEF said 850 children, some as young as 12, were in detention at Gweiran Prison and called for their release.

“As fighting continues, the risk for children increases including to be harmed or forcibly recruited,” UNICEF said in a statement.

This footage, provided on Sunday by the media arm of Kurdish-led YPG forces, shows ongoing fighting in Hasakah. Credit: YPG Press Office via Storyful