US-Backed Fighters Control North Syria Town

An alliance of Kurdish and Arab fighters grouped in the Syria Democratic Forces have taken full control of the northern Syrian city of Manbij near the Turkish border. A spokesman for the SDF group said the last remaining Islamic state fighters, who had been using civilians as human shields, have. The US-backed SDF have been sweeping the city after the departure of a last remaining group of militants who had been holed up in the city. They had freed over 2,000 civilian hostages who had been held by the militants. Anhar Tv caught the mood among the civilians after being freed. They were expressing happiness and were shouting against the Islamic State group. The SDF, with heavy air support from a u.s.-led coalition, said last week they had taken almost complete control of Manbij, where a small number of is fighters had been holed up. U.s. Officials who backed the initiative have said once the Manbij operation is completed, it would create the conditions to move on the militant group’s de facto capital of Raqqa. U.S. Officials anticipate a tough battle.

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