Troops Take Final ISIS Town Where Leader Baghdadi is Rumored to be Hiding


The Syrian army and its allies stated they’ve retaken the ultimate city held by the Islamic State militant group (ISIS) in Syria, the place the jihadis’ chief was rumored to have fled after being ousted by parallel beneficial properties towards his group in neighboring Iraq.

Syrian troops, preventing alongside varied pro-government and Iran-backed militias, have claimed a collection of main victories in a quickly closing pocket that contains ISIS’s ultimate stretch of territory within the Middle East. Aided by Russian airstrikes, Syria’s armed forces declared complete victory over the past ISIS-held metropolis of Deir Ezzor on Friday and continued to advance, badembly their Iraqi allies alongside their mutual border for the primary time for the reason that crossing was seized by insurgents against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in 2012, state-run Syrian Arab News Agency reported.

Related: Where is ISIS? Syria and Iraq go away no escape for Islamic State, as troops take ultimate main cities

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Footage aired by the Central Military Media Committee confirmed the encounter between the 2 fronts, which included the Lebanese Hezbollah and Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces, two Iran-backed Shiite Muslim actions. Syrian troops then encircled the ISIS-held city of Al-Bukamal because the Popular Mobilization Forces crossed the border to hitch the struggle to retake the jihadis ultimate refuge in Syria, in keeping with the pro-opposition, U.Okay.-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

After a joint effort by the Syrian and Iraqi militaries and their respective allies, the coalition declared complete victory, in keeping with Lebanon-based Al Mayadeen TV. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, nonetheless, disputed this account, saying some preventing continued throughout the city.

The battle for Al-Bukamal took on a doubtlessly new dimension amid broadly unfold, but unconfirmed experiences instructed that the elusive ISIS chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi had lately fled to the city. Citing an unnamed Iraqi intelligence supply, the Iraqi News Media Agency claimed Monday the notorious Salafi Sunni Muslim cleric escaped the different collapsing half of his self-proclaimed caliphate in Iraq by way of yellow taxi as Iraqi troops and the Popular Mobilization Forces retook the Iraq-Syria border crossing of Al-Qa’im.

Baghdadi took management of what was then generally known as the Islamic State of Iraq in 2010 after the demise of its former chief. The jihadi group, which grew out of Al-Qaeda in Iraq and was identified for its dedication to sectarian violence towards the nation’s Shiite Muslim group, had grown highly effective throughout the U.S. occupation of Iraq and took benefit of the rebellion towards Assad to unfold to Syria in 2013.

Amid lightning beneficial properties that noticed the group management almost half of Iraq and Syria at its top in 2014, Baghdadi beckoned Muslims from around the globe to hitch his militant trigger throughout a speech from the Grand Al-Nuri Mosque in Mosul, his first and solely identified public look as ISIS chief. In the years since, nonetheless, native and worldwide forces have diminished ISIS territory in each international locations to a fraction of its former self. Baghdadi was lengthy rumored lifeless however apparently appeared in a current voice recording launched in late September.

After retaking Al-Qa’im, Iraqi forces have reportedly begun operations to clear the deserts north of the crossing, leaving little room for ISIS to thrive. Pro-government forces have been additionally mobilized final month to examine a failed Kurdish bid for independence. Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi stated Tuesday that his nation’s “next war would be against the corrupt,” in keeping with the National Iraqi News Agency.

RTS1IVTD A map reveals areas of management in Syria between August 30, 2017 and October 30, 2017. Both the Syrian and Iraqi militaries, together with their allied militias and respective worldwide sponsors, have largely defeated ISIS, however elements of Syria stay below insurgent and Kurdish management. Institute for the Study of War/Reuters

In Syria, Assad has regained management over a lot of the territory misplaced to rebels and jihadis trying to overthrow him, and the army’s success in reaching the Iraqi border has established a pro-Iran land bridge of affect by Beirut, Damascus, Baghdad and Tehran. The Syrian chief, nonetheless, nonetheless confronted pockets of anti-government resistance sponsored by Turkey in addition to the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces, a largely Kurdish alliance of Arabs and ethnic minorities that has taken management of almost 1 / 4 of the nation.

While Russia has overseen talks between the Syrian authorities, the opposition, Kurds, Iran and Turkey, Assad and his allies have vowed to re-establish management over your entire nation, leaving the likelihood open for restricted “self-management” for Kurds within the north and pledging to tackle the U.S. and Turkey as invaders if they didn’t exit.

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