LONDON: The dramatic moment when an Al Arabiya TV crew was caught in a Daesh ambush on Thursday in the northwestern Syrian city of Al-Hasakah was captured live on air.
The channel broadcast the video of Daesh fighters firing on the news team, Kurdish, and US forces with footage showing members of the film crew taking refuge behind a car.
The news presenter is heard saying, “we have been caught in crossfire, Al Arabiya crew has been caught in crossfire after Daesh fighters moved in the vicinity of the prison.”
The incident came after Kurdish forces, backed by US-led anti-Daesh coalition forces, recaptured Ghwayran prison in Al-Hasakah after six days of fighting sparked by a Daesh attempt to free jailed fighters.
The jail held about 3,500 Daesh prisoners when the initial attack was launched on Jan. 20 using explosive-laden vehicles driven by suicide bombers.
The prison break bid and the fighting that ensued immediately after resulted in the death of more than 200 people, including 124 Daesh militants, 50 Kurdish fighters, and seven civilians. More casualties were expected to be found as Kurdish forces gained access to all parts of the jail.
The heavy fighting saw Daesh fighters seize control of a north wing in the prison, using child inmates as human shields. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, at least 850 children and minors were caught in crossfire when Kurdish forces stormed the jail.
Ghwayran prison is one of the largest facilities where the Kurdish administration holds Daesh detainees.