Lebanon

US-backed Syrian fighters now control almost half of IS city

U.S.-backed Syrian fighters have captured almost half of the Islamic State group's de facto capital of Raqqa, but the push into the city in northern Syria has slowed due to stiff resistance and large amounts of explosives planted by the extremists, a spokeswoman for the fighters and monitors said Thursday.

The assault on Raqqa by the Syrian Democratic Forces, a Kurdish-led fighting coalition, began June 6, backed by U.S.-led coalition airstrikes and U.S. troops advising the local forces.

Since then, the SDF has made steady advances from the eastern and western sides of the city, reaching the walled old quarter.

The fall of Raqqa, IS' self-proclaimed capital, would...

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