Beirut: A network of activists monitoring the Syria conflict says militants from the Islamic State group have seized five villages from Syrian rebels close to the Turkish border.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Wednesday the extremist group took five villages in Azaz district, where rebels hold an enclave host to tens of thousands of internally displaced civilians.
In recent months, rebel factions in Azaz, which lies north of Aleppo, have separately come under fire from the extremist group, pro-government forces and the predominantly Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces.
The advance puts IS in a better position to strike the towns of Marea and Azaz.
The IS group's news agency also reported the advance.