'Isis is finished': Syria declares end of terror group's 'project' as last town held by jihadis falls to army
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'Isis is finished': Syria declares end of terror group's 'project' as last town held by jihadis falls to army

By zzyzzx following x   2017 Nov 9, 10:29am 64 views   0 comments   watch   quote     share  


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http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/syria-isis-fall-albu-kamal-islamic-state-end-islamists-army-assad-a8045466.html


Isis militants withdrew on Thursday from their last stronghold in Syria, a strategic town near the border with Iraq, following a government offensive that has effectively left the extremist group's fighters dispersed in villages in the desert.

The Syrian military declared the town of Albu Kamal liberated after intense battles that killed a large number of militants, including leaders. The military said they are still chasing other Isis militants in different directions in the desert.

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said government forces and allied troops, including Iraqi forces who linked from across the border, are combing through Albu Kamal after Isis militants withdrew.

With the collapse of Isis in Albu Kamal, Isis militants have no major territorial control in Syria and Iraq and are believed to have dispersed in the desert west and east of the Euphrates River. US officials have estimated that there were between 2,500 and 3,500 Isis militants around Albu Kamal, and that leading members of the group were also believed to have taken refuge in the town. The group has a small presence near the capital Damascus.

Isis has suffered consecutive defeats at the hands of separate but simultaneous offensives in Iraq and Syria by the Russian-backed Syrian forces and allied militias as well as US-backed Iraqi and Syrian fighters.

Despite its fall, the group's media apparatus has remained active and its fighters are likely to keep up their insurgency from desert areas.

The swift fall of Albu Kamal in eastern Deir el-Zour province was accelerated after Iraqi forces seized al-Qaim, the town across the border last weekend, also controlling a strategic crossing between the two countries.
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