(Associated Press) The Islamic State group killed more than 150 troops captured in recent fighting for a string of military bases in northeastern Syria, shooting some and slashing others with knives in the past 24 hours, after reportedly forcing them to march naked in the desert for hours, in the latest mass killing attributed to the extremists, activists said Thursday.

The killing of government troops, combined with photos of dusty, terrified conscripts under militant guard in the desert, underscored how the extremist group uses violence — and images of violence — to instill fear in its opponents as it seeks to expand the proto-state it has carved out in Syria and neighboring Iraq.

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