Triple Attack on ISIS Last Pocket East of Euphrates

Sunday, 20 January, 2019 - 12:00
Beirut, London – Asharq Al-Awsat

A “triple bombardment” of the final ISIS enclave in eastern Syria was launched with the participation of the Iraqi air force and Syrian regime forces, in conjunction with the attack of US-backed Kurdish-Arab Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) on an ISIS pocket in Deir Ezzor, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported.

Since September, SDF, a coalition of Kurdish and Arab factions, have been waging a military operation against the last enclave of the terrorist organization near the Iraqi border and managed to control much of the region.

The Observatory indicated that the International Coalition launched airstrikes on al-Baghuz village killing 6 civilians, including 4 children, as well as 10 terrorists. It added that the bombardment continued and increased since the attack of Manbij days ago.

On Wednesday, a suicide bomb attack killed seven people, including four US nationals, two soldiers and two civilians working for the US Department of Defense.

The attack was the bloodiest on US forces in the international coalition since the beginning of its military intervention in Syria against ISIS in 2014.

After taking control of Hajin and al-Susah villages, the Democratic Forces are currently seeking to expel the organization from its last outpost, near the village of Baghuz and its surroundings.

Since the beginning of last month, some 21,000 people have left the last enclave towards areas controlled by the Syrian Democratic Forces, including 5,300 people who left as part of the evacuation agreements. Over 1,000 ISIS terrorist, who handed over their weapons to the Forces, were also among the people leaving the area.

Over the last two years, SDF have driven the extremist organization from large areas in the north and northeast of the country, most notably Raqqa, ISIS main stronghold in Syria.

The Syrian Observatory published that the SDF and the International Coalition Forces continue their military operations in Deir Ezzor countryside, against the remaining members of ISIS at the east bank of Euphrates River.

The Observatory also monitored the attack of Iraqi warplanes on the east of Euphrates, coinciding with the bombardment of Iranian forces and affiliated non-Syrian militias on the western bank of the Euphrates. At least 20 ISIS militants were killed.

The attack comes in conjunction with the ongoing violent clashes between ISIS remnants from one side, and the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces supported by ground forces of the International Coalition from the other, in the vicinity of al-Baghuz Foqani area and nearby villages from the east of the Euphrates, amid exchanged targeting on the fronts.

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