Members of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) gathering in Hasakah countryside in preparation for combating ISIS. File photo
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HASAKAH – Fighters of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) recaptured Friday a key town from the radical group of Islamic State (ISIS) in the eastern countryside of Hasakah, northeastern Syria, military sources reported.
Redur Khelil, the spokesman for the Kurdish YPG forces, told reporters in al-Hawl town that ISIS has fled the town after a fierce attack by the SDF forces.
The SDF is a Kurdish-Arab alliance backed by the U.S.-led international coalition. The YPG constitutes a main force of the alliance.
Speaking to ARA News in Hasakah, SDF fighter Shoresh Hisso said: “Our forces were able to liberate the key town of al-Hawl from the terror group after heavy battles.
“Our operations caused heavy losses in the ranks of Daesh (ISIS), forcing the remaining terrorists to escape,” he added.
The source pointed out that the U.S.-led coalition forces targeted a ISIS fighting positions in al-Hawl on Friday, “which facilitated our movement towards the major headquarters in the town”.
The Syrian Democratic Forces had announced the battle for al-Hawl on October 30. Over the last two weeks the Kurdish-Arab alliance continued its advance and regained large areas from ISIS in Hasakah province. Al-Hawl was the major ISIS stronghold in the province due to its strategic location on the Syrian-Iraqi border.
On Wednesday, the U.S.-backed SDF recaptured Bahrat al-Khatooniya village in the vicinity of al-Hawl town after fierce clashes with ISIS militants.
Al-Hawl, which is located some 40 kilometres (25 mi) east of Hasakah, holds a strategic location for being a key access to the Iraqi territory.
After losing al-Hawl, ISIS’s military and economic situation may deteriorate due to the cut of a main supply route between the group’s strongholds in Syria and Iraq.
Noteworthy, recapturing al-Hawl came hours after the Kurdish Peshmerga forces in Iraqi Kurdistan took control of Shingal (Sinjar) district in Nineveh province after fierce battles with ISIS. In August 2014, ISIS launched a massive offensive on Shingal, causing a mass displacement of tens of thousands of Yezidi civilians and the captivity of thousands of women.
Reporting by: Qehreman Miste
Source: ARA News