Islamic State attacks al-Bab after retreating, at least 41 killed [updated]

al-Bab, Anadolu Agency

UK-based war monitor Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) has said that the Islamic State (IS) group targeted al-Bab with a suicide car bomb causing many casualties.

On Friday, the SOHR announced from its website that after 24 hours of withdrawing from the town, IS attacked its north-western countryside of Sousian.

According to the SOHR and Turkish state-run agency AA, 41 people were killed and dozens injured by the massive explosion when the vehicle targeted a military base recently seized by the Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA).

The explosion comes after IS retreated from al-Bab, Bazaa, and Qabasin.

After an intense battle that raged for months, Turkish-backed FSA groups declared yesterday that al-Bab was under their control. Reports from the region said that IS had retreated from the town after defeat was imminent.

The Turkish army and its allied FSA factions launched the al-Bab offensive on 4 December last year as part of its Euphrates Shield operation. As many as 67 Turkish soldiers died in the fight to take al-Bab alone, with no official numbers given for FSA casualties, thought to be in their hundreds.