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ISIS loses two-thirds of the caliphate in Syria in four months of defeats

The battle of the valley of the Euphrates marks the end of the harassment to the Islamic State on the border with Iraq

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ISIS loses two-thirds of the caliphate in Syria in four months of defeats

The Islamic State is dying after chaining four months of consecutive losses. In Syria, which controlled 39% of surface area of country last may, has seen it now reduced its scope of power to only 12.3%, cornered in a last redoubt and eastern and desert areas. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an NGO informants on ground that maintains an independent account of conflict, stresses that Army of regime of Damascus has been largely benefited from retreat of jihadists, by multiplying by a factor of 2.5 its territorial until y reach this month to 48%.

After loss of Mosul, where y proclaimed caliphate in 2014, ISIS barely retains a residual presence in Iraq. The final battle in Syria is being waged in valley of Euphrates, between Raqa, its capital besieged since June, and province of Deir Ezzor, rich in oil deposits.

The syrian Army has concentrated elite troops and armored vehicles in around Deir Ezzor, in eastern border with Iraq, to eject it with support of Russian aircraft and allied fighters shi'a to Islamic State (ISIS, for its acronym in English) of ir last major stronghold in arab country. The Observatory confirmed yesterday advance of government on district of Al-Jafra, a move that has cut supply lines of ISIS and tightened siege on city. To jihadists, who still control one-third of provincial capital, are left to Euphrates as a means of escape. The military loyal to regime have spent a week under siege to sitiadores, in a clear sign of volatility of lines of resistance of caliphate.

operation of The Army coincides with offensive in same province by Democratic Forces and Syrian (FDS), a partnership led by kurdish militias in Syria and sustained by coalition antiyihadista, led by United States. Both fronts have approached even to approach within a few kilometres, which has increased risk of friendly fire between oretical enemies you fight simultaneously with ISIS. The U.S. warned Saturday that Russian aircraft had bombed area in fighters of FDS, including that caused injuries to several ors. The Russian Defense Ministry denied having attacked kurdish rebels and said that it had communicated to command american air activity against jihadists.

“Without speculating on a change of strategy of ISIS, it is clear that raised a struggle much harder in Mosul, given that it was ir self-declared capital in Iraq,” he added in a message exchange, u.s. colonel Ryan Dillon, a spokesman for international coalition. “In fact, in Raqa we are seeing same resistance suicidal desperate.” More than 50,000 combatants of FDS around old command center of terrorist campaign global.

“has Not set a deadline for complete liberation of Raqa, but you can ensure that eradication of ISIS is assured. Our allies of FDS are gaining ground each day. Control historical Great Mosque and dominate more than 60% of city,” says colonel Dillon. “But re is still a fierce battle in a dense urban area, where you fight house by house”. The spokesman of coalition blame caution of his advance “to bombings and mines placed to prevent departure of civilians”.

After fall of Mosul on 10th of July, after nine months of siege, Islamic State has held down a string of defeats. Kept in Iraq some enclaves border and region of Hawija, east of Kirkuk. In Syria resists in tiny stronghold of Yarmouk, on triple border between Syria, Jordan, and Golan heights (occupied by Israel), and in a bastion in middle of desert central. The jihadists had to withdraw from Qalamun, near border with Lebanon, caught between crossfire of Army in Beirut and troops of Damascus and its shiite allies Hezbollah. Escaped in a convoy of buses that was blocked for a week by aviation of international coalition.

Overwhelmed in Iraq

Also fled in mass exodus of Tal Afar, his last feud in syrian border of Iraq, which surrendered after little more than a week of fighting. “The main reason for decisive victory of Tal Afar was to increase combat capability of iraqi security forces. Overwhelmed in number and fire power to ISIS attacking on five fronts simultaneously with all of ir units: Army, police, anti-terrorist units, tribal militias and peshmergas [kurdish militias],” says colonel Dillon on behalf of international coalition.

The caliper against ISIS is nearing completion in recent days, with advance of government troops syrian, who have broken fences that kept some 2,500 jihadi military bases, land and air in Deir Ezzor, which is divided from three years ago, and have to regain city.

The reconquest of oil deposits of Teym —located downstream of main river of Syria, also in province of Deir Ezzor— has been deprived by ISIS of one of its main sources of income, time that has been cut road leading to Mayadin, a town close to iraqi border where it is suspected that it has taken shelter of leader of caliphate, Abubaker al Baghdadi, and Islamic State tries to regroup.

Aron Lund, exinvestigador of program for middle East Carnegie, defined in IRIN, a publication of UN, strategic value of Deir Ezzor. “About 100,000 civilians pens have depended upon to survive in a large extent of help that has been thrown at United Nations since air from two years ago,” he says. The World Food Programme of UN carried out 300 missions to send a parachute to 6,000 tonnes of aid to enclaves under siege. Road convoys with relief international have returned to provincial capital in east of Syria.

Thanks to a truce negotiated with mediation of Russia in or areas of country, regime of president Bashar al-Assad has managed to send fresh troops from west of Syria in order to expand ir territorial control. The spokesman of international coalition, colonel Ryan Dillon, has warned that “ Daesh will never have ir last refuge in valley of Euphrates”.

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