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Activists: Tribesmen force extremist group out of eastern Syrian villages

  • Mideast Iraq-1.jpg

    In this Tuesday, July 29, 2014 photo, Islamic militants parade in Beiji, some 250 kilometers (155 miles) north of the capital, Baghdad, Iraq. Last month's rapid advance of the Islamic State group, which captured Iraq's second largest city of Mosul, has plunged the country into its worst crisis since the withdrawal of U.S. troops in 2011 with more than a million Iraqis now classified as internally displaced or refugees. (AP Photo) (The Associated Press)

  • Mideast Iraq-2.jpg

    In this Tuesday, July 29, 2014 photo, Islamic militant parade in Beiji, some 250 kilometers (155 miles) north of the capital, Baghdad, Iraq. Last month's rapid advance of the Islamic State group, which captured Iraq's second largest city of Mosul, has plunged the country into its worst crisis since the withdrawal of U.S. troops in 2011 with more than a million Iraqis now classified as internally displaced or refugees. (AP Photo) (The Associated Press)

Activists say tribesmen have risen up against the extremist Islamic State group in eastern Syria, forcing it to withdraw from some villages.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and Turkey-based activist Mustafa Osso on Saturday said the group was forced to bring in reinforcements from neighboring Iraq.

They said members of the Shueitat tribe in Syria's oil-rich eastern province of Deir el-Zour forced jihadi fighters to withdraw from the villages of Kishkiyeh, Abu Hamam and Granij.

They said fighting first broke out Wednesday after jihadis detained three tribesmen.

The al-Qaida breakaway Islamic State took over large swaths of western and northern Iraq in June. The group has declared a self-styled caliphate in territory it controls in Iraq and Syria, imposing a harsh interpretation of Islamic law.