The so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have entered the western regions of Daesh’s last stronghold in Syria, Raqqah, says a UK-based monitoring group.
According to the so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the US-backed SDF entered the city from the western front that is currently engaged in heavy clashes with the terrorists.
“The SDF captured the western half of the al-Sabahiya neighborhood and are reinforcing their positions there,” said observatory head Rami Abdel Rahman.
“They then advanced north to the adjacent district of al-Romaniya and are fighting Daesh,” he added.
The SDF has also confirmed that it has entered the city and is engaged in “fierce fighting” in Romaniya.
“Daesh has reinforced the northern approach to Raqqah much more, thinking that’s how the SDF would try to advance on the city…The western and eastern entrances to the city were much less fortified,” noted Rahman.
The SDF is led by the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) which Ankara views as a terrorist organization over its alleged links to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
Daesh seized Raqqah in 2014, the same year when it started its campaign of terror in Syria. It then proceeded to capture large swathes of Syrian territory.
Syrian army reaches Iraq border
Meanwhile, the Syrian army has announced that it has gained control of a vast territory in southeastern Syria, reaching the border “with friendly Iraq.”
“This achievement is a strategic turning point in the war on terrorism and a springboard to expand military operations in the Badiya [region in southeast Syria] and along the border with the friendly Iraq,” said a statement released from the army’s general command.
The successful operation highlights the ability and determination of Syrian forces in defending the Takfiri terrorists, and shows that it is the “only effective force in fighting terrorism,” added the statement. It went on to stress that the US attacks on Syrian force are nothing but an attempt to “hinder the advance of the Syrian Arab Army and its allies in their war on terrorism.”
On Tuesday, US-led warplanes attacked a Syrian military position on the road to the town of al-Tanf — where US forces are based — killing a number of people and causing some material damage.
The US claims the air raid was carried out after Syrian forces “advanced inside the well-established deconfliction zone in southern Syria,” where they posed a threat to “partner forces” based in al-Tanf. The US had previously declared the surrounding 55 kilometers around the town a “deconfliction zone,” in which only forces allied to Washington were allowed entry.
Stop attacking Syrian forces: Russia to US
Also on Saturday, Russia announced that it had told the US that its strikes on Syrian forces were unacceptable.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov gave the warning to US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson during a phone conversation, said a statement released by the Russian foreign ministry.
“Lavrov expressed his categorical disagreement with the US strikes on pro-government forces and called on him to take concrete measures to prevent similar incidents in future,” said the statement.
Different foreign-backed terrorist groups have been wreaking havoc in Syria since 2011.
Over the past few months, Syrian forces have made sweeping gains against Takfiri elements, who have lately increased their acts of violence across the country following a series of defeats on the ground.