Al-Dumayr offensive (April 2016)

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Al-Dumayr offensive (April 2016)
Part of the Rif Dimashq Governorate campaign of the Syrian civil war
Date4–16 April 2016
(1 week and 5 days)
Result Syrian Army victory
Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant

Syria Syrian Arab Republic

Army of Islam[1]
Commanders and leaders
Abu Jihad al-Shami Unknown
Units involved
Military of ISIL

Syrian Armed Forces

Casualties and losses
35 killed[citation needed] 20 killed[citation needed]
18 civilians killed by airstrikes[3]
250–300 cement plant workers kidnapped by ISIL[4] (170 released, 4 executed)[5]

The al-Dumayr offensive was a military offensive launched in April 2016 by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant near the town of al-Dumayr, east of Damascus, Syria. The attack is notable for the abduction of hundreds of cement plant workers by ISIL.[4]

The offensive[edit]

On 4 April, ISIL attacked areas around the city of al-Dumayr, northeast of Damascus, resulting in 250–300 cement plant workers being abducted from a factory by ISIL.[6] ISIL reportedly massacred 175 of them afterwards, while 75 escaped.[citation needed] Druze employees were murdered while non-minority Muslims were released.[7][8]

On 6 April, ISIL launched an attack on the Dumayr Airbase, outside the town, sending five car bombs and killing 12 Syrian soldiers.[9] The attack was repelled by the Syrian Army and the National Defence Forces.[10] Due to a partial ceasefire, the Syrian Armed Forces reportedly allowed some Jaysh al-Islam militants from Ghouta to cross into al-Dumayr in order to fight ISIL. The Syrian Air Force also hit ISIL targets in the front with the rebels.[1]

On 9 April, a new ISIL attack on the airport and power plant was reportedly repelled,[11] after which the airport was declared secured.[12]

On 11 April, a Syrian Air Force plane was shot down by ISIL near the airbase.[13] Two days later, yet another attack on the airbase was repelled, although Army checkpoints outside the base had sustained heavy damage.[14]

On 14 April, the Army launched a counter-attack, quickly recapturing several hilltops,[15] and by the following day, they had retaken control of the Khan Abu Shamat base and the Badia cement plant.[16][17] On 16 April, the military continued to advance and recaptured the Battalion 559 base, Al-Sini Factory, Al-Safa Station and the triangle Baghdad-Palmyra-Jordan checkpoint, ending the ISIL offensive.[18][19]


  1. ^ a b "Syrian Army, rebels work together against ISIS in east Damascus". Al-Masdar News. 7 April 2016.
  2. ^ Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi (17 January 2017). "Quwat Dir' Al-Qalamoun: Shifting Militia Links". Syria Comment. Retrieved 10 September 2017.
  3. ^ Sam Dagher (7 April 2016). "Islamic State Kidnaps More Than 300 Syrian Workers". WSJ. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  4. ^ a b "Syria civil war: ISIL kidnaps '300 factory workers'". Al Jazeera English. 8 April 2016.
  5. ^ "Islamic State begins releasing kidnapped workers: Syrian Observatory". Reuters. 8 April 2016.
  6. ^ "Syria conflict: IS 'abducts hundreds of factory workers'". BBC. 7 April 2016.
  7. ^ Associated Press (9 April 2016). "Most Cement Workers Abducted by Islamic State in Syria Freed". WSJ. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  8. ^ "Islamic State frees most of 300 abducted cement workers, kills 4". The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  9. ^ "Islamic State attacks Syrian forces near Damascus". Reuters. 6 April 2016.
  10. ^ "Syrian Army thwarts the ISIS offensive at the Dumayr Airport". Al-Masdar News. 6 April 2016.
  11. ^ Leith Fadel (9 April 2016). "Syrian Army pushes back the Islamic State at the Tishreen Power Plant". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  12. ^ h.said. "Field commander at al-Dmeir Airport: Airport completely secure". Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  13. ^ "The Latest: Activists: IS militants down Syrian warplane - US News". US News & World Report. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  14. ^ Leith Fadel (13 April 2016). "ISIS attempts to advance on the Dumayr Airbase in east Damascus". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  15. ^ Leith Fadel (15 April 2016). "Syrian Army strikes back against ISIS in east Damascus: several hilltops liberated". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  16. ^ Chris Tomson (15 April 2016). "Syrian Army drives back ISIS in eastern Damascus & recaptures Badia Cement Factory". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  17. ^ Chris Tomson (16 April 2016). "Battle for east Damascus underway as Syrian Army & rebels gang up on ISIS - Map update". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  18. ^ Leith Fadel (16 April 2016). "ISIS offensive at Dumayr ends in disaster as the Syrian Army reclaims the area". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  19. ^ edward. "دخول 52 شاحنة تحمل مساعدات إنسانية إلى بلدات بغوطة دمشق الشرقية". المرصد السورى لحقوق الإنسان. Archived from the original on December 15, 2019. Retrieved 24 April 2016.