DEIR AL-ZOR (Kurdistan 24) – The US-backed, Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have sent more than 1,700 fighters to reinforce the offensive against the Islamic State (IS) in Deir al-Zor Province in eastern Syria, a monitor said on Friday.
The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the SDF sent more military reinforcements to the last IS-held pocket of eastern Syria known as Hajin.
The deployment contained many factions in SDF-held areas in northeast Syria, including Jaysh al-Thuwar, internal police, and security forces known as Asayish, the Observatory added.
While the SDF has been preparing for a ground attack on the remaining IS-held areas in the past few days, they used ground shelling and bombardment along with the support of US-led coalition air strikes.
The bombardment intensified on Friday, targeting IS positions in Hajin, Susah, and Tanak oil field, causing 22 IS casualties, including a local commander, the Observatory claimed.
On Sept. 11, the SDF and the US-led international coalition announced the start of their operation to take the last remaining IS-held town of Hajin in eastern Syria, located along the banks of the Euphrates River, in addition to the surrounding villages of Baghoz, Susah, and Shafa’.
In October, the SDF gained control of Baghoz and Susah, which IS militants controlled over in the last week of the month.
On Oct. 31, the SDF said it had decided to temporarily halt its campaign against the jihadist group until Turkey ended its attack on Syria’s northeast.
On Nov. 11, following intensive discussions with the US-led coalition, the General Command of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) announced the resumption of military operations against IS in the region.
Editing by John J. Catherine