20 US-backed Kurdish troops killed as forces storm ISIS-held village in east Syria
U.S.-backed Syrian forces entered Saturday an eastern village held by ISIS where intense clashes are ongoing a day after the terrorists reportedly killed 20 fighters, the forces and a war monitor said.
The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces said its fighters stormed Bagouz and are close to the center of the village. The forces added that they plan to open another front in the Sousseh area along the Euphrates river to increase pressure on the terrorists.
The storming of Bagouz came a day after the Observatory said ISIS gunmen took advantage of a sandstorm and killed 20 SDF fighters in the country’s east, wounding others.
SDF launched with the help of the U.S.-led coalition a wide offensive this week to capture the last pocket held by ISIS in Syria.
The Kurdish-led forces have been among the most effective in the fight against ISIS in Syria, forcing them out of much of the country’s east.
Despite losing most of the territory it held between Iraq and Syria since its peak in 2014, the jihadist ISIS remains a disruptive force in both countries. Its leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, urged his followers to “persevere” in an audiotape attributed to him last month.
In another incident, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said at least 21 pro-Assad fighters had been killed in an ambush by ISIS terrorists in a remote Tulul al-Safa area of Sweida, in the south-west of the country.
Syrian state media reported fierce clashes in the area and said government aircraft and artillery had bombed ISIS “hideouts”, eliminating or injuring scores of terrorists.
Earlier this week, Druze women and girls kidnapped by ISIS called for their release in a video.
Last July, more than 36 Druze women and girls from the eastern villages of Sweida were kidnapped by ISIS terrorists. They are intended to be used as human shields. No one in the world is even talking about them.