ISIS suicide bombers hit Kurdish positions north of Raqqa

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Soldiers of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) gathered ahead of a press conference in western Raqqa. Photo: ARA News

ARA News

Raqqa – The Islamic State (ISIS) launched several suicide attacks on Wednesday, targeting the defenses of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in northern Raqqa Governorate.

“Members of the extremist group carried out four simultaneous attacks at YPG checkpoints in the vicinity of Ain Issa,” media activist Jivan Mustafa told ARA News.

The Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) are the largest force within the SDF. They have also proven to be among the most effective forces fighting ISIS, employing a highly-adaptive doctrine that emphasizes stealth, surprise and speed.

“Daesh terrorists try to impede our progress through launching such suicide attacks,” an SDF officer told ARA News in western Raqqa, using another acronym for ISIS. “But such cowardly attacks won’t affect our advance.”

The YPG and SDF have not issued yet issued a statement with regard to the attacks. The number of casualties remains unknown.

Wednesday’s suicide bombing comes a few days after the Syrian Democratic Forces launched the second phase of the Euphrates Wrath Operation. While the first phase focused on securing both banks of the Balikh River, the second phase aims “at liberating the western countryside of Raqqa.”

The SDF and the US-led coalition have liberated 37 km2 so far as part of the second phase of the operation. During the first phase of Euphrates Wrath, SDF soldiers captured an area measuring approximately 560 km2.

The long-term objective of Euphrates Wrath is the elimination of the Islamic State in its de facto capital, Raqqa city.

Military sources told ARA News that more than 200 ISIS jihadists have been killed since November 6. Cihan Shekh Ehmed, an SDF spokesperson, declared that the “operation will continue until all of its goals are accomplished.”

Reporting by: Qehreman Miste | Source: ARA News

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