The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) continues to gain ground in eastern Syria, raising fears that the Al-Qaeda-inspired group in Syria will be able to unite with ISIS fighters in control of territory in Iraq’s western Anbar province.

In comments to Asharq Al-Awsat, Syrian Observatory for Human Rights director Rami Abdulrahman said that ISIS has wrested control of the entire rural area expanding from eastern Aleppo to the western parts of the oil-rich district of Deir Ezzor, along the borders with Iraq.

Clashes were reported on Thursday between ISIS and moderate Islamist rebels who were driven further to the south, said Abdulrahman. […]