ISIS defeated in Syria's Raqqa, US-backed militias raise flag inside stadium

ISIS defeated in Syria's Raqqa, US-backed militias raise flag inside stadium

The operation involved 15,000 SDF fighters supported by a major air campaign by the US-led anti-IS coalition. There had been fears that the US-backed force could get bogged down in a protracted battle for the last 10 percent of the city where the jihadists had prepared for a last stand.

The capture of the hospital on Tuesday leaves IS militants cornered in and around the notorious municipal stadium in Raqqa - one the terror group's de facto capital.

"Most of Raqqa people, including us, were looking forward to the day that ISIS would be defeated, but not in this scenario, having a new leadership that committed many human rights violations", he said.

The SDF, an alliance of Kurdish and Arab militias, took the National Hospital in fierce fighting overnight and early on Tuesday, said spokesman Mostafa Bali in a statement. The major victory comes weeks after fighter of Syrian Democratic Forces launched an offensive on the city.

The only populated areas the extremist group still controls in Syria are the towns and villages downstream of Deir Ezzor city along the Euphrates Valley.

The government gains in eastern Syria came as USA -backed Syrian forces liberated the city of Raqqa that was once the de facto capital of IS.

An global charity group says tens of thousands of people who fled the northern Syrian city of Raqqa are in bad need of aid and that the "camps are bursting at the seams". Kurdish and Arab fighters jubilantly took to the streets to celebrate the capture they have spent four months fighting for, climbing onto vehicles and parading around the deserted, destroyed city, according to photographs posted on social media.

On Tuesday the global charity Save the Children said numerous 270,000 people who fled the fighting would likely be stuck in aid camps for months or years.

Sonia Khush, Save the Children's director for Syria, described conditions in the camps where displaced from Raqqa are staying as "miserable and families do not have enough food, water or medicine". "The children", she said, "have suffered for years under ISIS and must not be forgotten once the fighting subsides".

Gen. Talal Sillo told the Associated Press that there are no longer clashes going on in the city.

Sillo says a formal declaration will follow befitting "the fall of the capital of terrorism". The experience over the past two days of the Kurds in neighboring Iraq may embolden the Syrian government to challenge the Syrian Kurdish enclave once the Islamic State is vanquished, just as the Iraqi government has moved to dislodge Kurdish forces from the oil-rich city of Kirkuk and other areas they controlled.

It wasn't immediately clear if the IS militants are still holed up inside the stadium.

The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have captured Syria's northern city of Raqqa, after fully defeating the Islamic State (IS) group on Tuesday, the SDF spokesman told Xinhua.

Fighters hauled down the black flag of Daesh, the last still flying over the city, from the National Hospital near the stadium.

Musafa Bali, a spokesman for the Syrian Democratic Forces, says 22 IS militants were killed in the advance on the hospital. Dillon said 350 fighters had surrendered in recent days, including some foreign fighters.

If Mosul gained notoriety as pulpit from which the Islamic State declared its religiously inspired caliphate, Raqqa became the stage from which it showcased its form of rule.

Related Articles

  • Iraq launches advance on Kurdish territory in bold strike after independence vote

    Iraq launches advance on Kurdish territory in bold strike after independence vote

    Iraq has demanded that Kurdistan allow its forces to return to positions it held before the war against Islamic State militants. Tensions in the area began rising several weeks ago, when the country's Kurds voted for independence from Baghdad.
    North Korea crisis: Tillerson says diplomacy will continue

    North Korea crisis: Tillerson says diplomacy will continue

    President Donald Trump has challenged Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to compare IQ tests. But Tillerson said suggestions that he's been undermined have no basis in fact.
    Again?! Owner of 'Breaking Bad' Home Builds Wall to Prevent Pizza Tossers

    Again?! Owner of 'Breaking Bad' Home Builds Wall to Prevent Pizza Tossers

    At least be kind and deliver it nicely to their doorstep because everyone loves pizza... just not on a roof. Frank Sandoval, who runs " Breaking Bad' RV Tours in the area, said he's taken pizza pies off the roof".
  • U.S. flies strategic bombers over Korean peninsula

    Commenting on the news is Chris Doman, security researcher at AlienVault, who is investigating hacking groups in North Korea. The South's Yonhap news agency quoted Lee as saying that 235 gigabytes of military documents were taken.
    Trump warns 'disgusting' press after nuclear policy report

    Trump warns 'disgusting' press after nuclear policy report

    Further, they said Trump not only asked about more nuclear weapons, but also about increasing US troops and military equipment. Dave Brat, a conservative Virginia Republican, told TIME in the Capitol Building on Wednesday.

    Trump To Make Downgraded Visit To Britain In Early 2018

    Downing Street insisted it was unaware of any change of plans, however, and officials said the intention was for Mr Trump to stay with the Queen.
  • Malta blogger Daphne Caruana Galizia killed in auto  bomb attack

    Malta blogger Daphne Caruana Galizia killed in auto bomb attack

    Caruana Galizia had enjoyed a successful career in journalism, working for several of the major titles in Malta. Local media reports indicated that in recent days she had filed a police report complaining of death threats.
    October FIFA Ranking Provides Glimpse Into World Cup Draw Possibilities

    October FIFA Ranking Provides Glimpse Into World Cup Draw Possibilities

    The seeded teams have been decided by October's FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking, published today. Russian Federation is top-seeded for the World Cup despite being ranked No. 65.
    The Stranger Things Season 2 Final Trailer Will Give You Life

    The Stranger Things Season 2 Final Trailer Will Give You Life

    Eleven ( Millie Bobby Brown ), a girl with telekinetic powers who has been trapped in the Upside Down, will also return. The Demogorgon is bigger this season and the secrets from the Hawkins Lab will probably be revealed this year.
  • India defeat Pakistan 3-1 in Hockey Asia Cup

    India defeat Pakistan 3-1 in Hockey Asia Cup

    Twitter came alive after the match with several celebrities, among others, congratulating the Indian team on the superb win. Much to Pakistan's disappointment Harmanpreet Singh had scored for Indian in the 45th minute giving India the lead for 3-0.
    San Francisco 49ers: NaVorro Bowman release a sad reality of rebuild

    San Francisco 49ers: NaVorro Bowman release a sad reality of rebuild

    He's signed through the 2019 season with a base salary of $6.75 million this year and $8.7 million next year, per Spotrac . With Bowman gone, the 49ers basically discarded the last major piece of their team that reached Super Bowl XLVII .
    Wells Fargo & Company Earnings Ahead: Quick Glance

    Wells Fargo & Company Earnings Ahead: Quick Glance

    Chief Financial Officer John Shrewsberry suggested Wells Fargo may also face issues hitting next year's cost-efficiency target. Finally, Hotchkis & Wiley Capital Management LLC lifted its position in shares of Wells Fargo & by 49.5% in the first quarter.