Reuters reports: Thousands of new fighters joined Islamic State in Syria last month in its fastest expansion to date, a body monitoring the war said on Tuesday.
Now in control of roughly a third of Syria and large areas of Iraq, Islamic State has been seizing territory from rival Islamist groups in a belt of territory north of Aleppo, threatening rebel supply lines into the city where President Bashar al-Assad’s forces are seeking to encircle the insurgents.
Islamic State recruited at least 6,300 men in July, Rami Abdelrahman, founder of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, told Reuters – a big expansion from early estimates suggesting the group numbered around 15,000. Around a thousand of the new fighters were foreign, and the rest Syrian, he said. [Continue reading…]