‘Syr­ian army ad­vances against IS, ap­proaches Deir Ez­zor’

Muscat Daily - - REGION -

Beirut, Le­banon - Syr­ian gov­ern­ment troops ad­vanced overnight against the Is­lamic State group in the coun­try’s north and cen­tre, draw­ing closer to the key bat­tle­ground of Deir Ez­zor, a mon­i­tor said.

The Syr­ian Ob­ser­va­tory for Hu­man Rights, a Bri­tain-based mon­i­tor, said the army had made ‘sig­nif­i­cant progress’ south of Raqa city.

“There is now just four kilo­me­tres be­tween regime forces and the town of Madan, which is the last town con­trolled by IS in the Raqa coun­try­side,” the Ob­ser­va­tory said.

Madan lies next to the bor­der be­tween Raqa prov­ince and Deir Ez­zor, an east­ern prov­ince that is mostly held by IS.

Ex­trem­ists have be­sieged gov­ern­ment forces and civil­ians in­side the pro­vin­cial cap­i­tal Deir Ez­zor city since 2015.

Syr­ian loy­al­ist troops are bat­tling IS in the south of Raqa prov­ince sep­a­rately.

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