U.S.-backed force attacks last Islamic State pocket in eastern Syria

BBC News reports: “A US-backed militia alliance has begun what it says is the final stage of a campaign to clear the Islamic State (IS) group from north-eastern Syria.

The Syrian Democratic Forces launched a ground offensive on Monday against jihadist militants around Hajin, a town in the Middle Euphrates River Valley.

The international coalition backing the Kurdish and Arab fighters said they were expecting a ‘difficult fight’.

The US recently estimated that IS still had about 14,000 militants in Syria.

Most are believed to be in an area stretching east from the Euphrates to the border with Iraq, about 25km (16 miles) away from Hajin, and in desert areas in the south and centre of the country, where the Syrian government is battling them…”

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