When the delegation of Ali returned from Muawiyah, Ali called for his own council of war. After deliberations it was decided that an immediate attack should be made to gain control of the source of water supply. In the action that followed there was hard fighting with lances and swords. Some persons were killed from both the sides, but ultimately the forces of Ali had the upper hand, and they dislodged the Syrians from all the points commanding access to the source of water supply.
Now the position was reversed, and Muawiyah had to approach Ali to allow the Syrians access to the source of water supply. Some of the counselors of Ali advised him to pay the Syrians in their own coin, and to refuse them access to the source of water supply. Ali overruled them saying that Islam did not permit them to stop the supply of water to their enemy. He said that he had to be guided by the Book of God, and he could not act in the way the people acted during the Age of Ignorance. While the troops of Ali maintained the over all control of the source of water supply, the troops of Muawiyah were allowed to have the water they needed at specified hours. During such hours men from both the sides came in contact, and the general feeling was that instead of resorting to an armed conflict, the disputes between the two sides should be settled through peaceful means.