18 November 2017
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  • » 11/07/2017, 10.03

    SYRIA

    Hundreds of families return to Raqqa after the expulsion of Isis



    Returns to the former jihadist stronghold in Syria have begun. The first phase concerns the eastern district of Al-Meshleb, cleansed of explosives left by the militiamen. Land reclamation work continues. In recent days, several civilian deaths due to detonation of mines.

    Damascus (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Hundreds of civilians have returned to the war-torn neighborhoods in Raqqa, Syria, for years strongholds of the Islamic State (IS, former Isis). According to sources from the US-led coalition, the protagonist of the massive bombings that hit the area, this is the first big wave of re-entry since the beginning of the de-mining operations of explosives left by the jihadists.

    On October 17, the Caliphate militias lost control of what their bastion was for a long time in Syria at the end of long months of battle against the Syrian Democratic Forces (FDS). Tens of thousands of people have abandoned the city for the offensive, reducing Raqqa to a "ghost town" of destroyed buildings.

    In a popular note at these times by FDS leaders, hundreds of families have "returned to al-Meshleb", the eastern district of the city. "They were able to return to their homes," he adds, "after expert teams have completed the demolition of the entire district by explosives left indiscriminately in civilian houses by the SI."

    Al-Meshleb is the first district of Raqqa to see the return of residents since the city’s "liberation from Daesh", the Arabic acronym for IS. Following the flight of militia, Arab-Kurdish forces sealed off the area to carry out land reclamation.

    In recent days there have been cases of civilians who have violated the entry ban and have died in the explosion of mines.

    The de- mining and reconstruction work is coordinated by the Raqqa Municipal Council, a provisional administrative body chosen by the FDS leaders and located outside the city. Some residents have come back, Omar Alloush, one of the members of the Council, said, "but the city has not yet been completely cleared from mines."

    At the peak of its expansion, the Islamic State controlled about half of the territories of Syria and Iraq, although it was mostly desert areas. Today in Syria some small ramparts scattered in the Euphrates Valley remain in their hands. In nearby Iraq they were defeated at a military level, but local fighter cells still remain active.

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    See also

    23/10/2017 10:31:00 SYRIA - RUSSIA - USA
    Moscow: The US campaign against Isis has erased Raqqa 'from the face of the earth'

    The Syrian city suffered the same fate as Dresden at the end of World War II. UN investigation speaks of "shocking loss" of human lives among civilians. Washington replies: risk of collateral damage minimized. At least 270,000 displaced people, it will take months for their return.



    17/10/2017 09:29:00 SYRIA
    Arab-Kurdish coalition takes infamous Raqqa square used for executions

    Decapitated and crucified bodies remained hanging on poles or from lanterns for days. The offensive of Syrian Democratic Forces (Fsd) continues in the "capital" of the Caliphate. Currently, jihadists still control 10% of the territory, including the main hospital and the stadium. The structure is used as prison and weapon storage. Highly symbolic victory for coalition.



    19/06/2017 10:01:00 SYRIA - USA
    Raqqa:US Air force shoots down a Syrian jet, pilot missing

    The jet was engaged on a mission against the Islamic State. Damascus speaks of "gross attack". According to Washington, it hit soldiers of the US-backed Arab-Kurd coalition. Joint exercises between Iran and China in the Persian Gulf.

     



    10/10/2017 09:43:00 SYRIA
    Fight to Drive IS from Syria Bastion Raqa Nears End

    The jihadists' self-described caliphate is crumbling. IS is believed to be holding civilians as human shields in the hospital, complicating efforts to capture the position. The militia has captured around 90 percent of Raqa since entering the city in June. Tens of thousands of civilians have fled the city. 

     



    09/03/2017 14:40:00 SYRIA – UNITED STATES
    Marines in Syria for the assault against Raqqa

    US troops plan to help the Kurdish-Arab Syrian Democratic Forces. Their deployment has not been authorised by Syria’s Assad, but certainly received Russia’s green light.





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