US-backed push begins to retake Syria border pocket from IS

June 1, 2016
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Thousands of coalition US-backed fighters started an offensive to recapture the critical swathe of land near the Turkish border from the IS. According to the US military, mostly Syrian Arab fighters involved in the battle for Manbij Pocket. US military advisers coordinate special forces movements away from the front line, and this crucial operation planned to be completed in several weeks.

US military advisors in Syria say that the massive offensive against IS militants has started. US-supported coalition troops began the battle for Manbij Pocket – the important strip of land on the border of Turkey and IS. This zone is critical to the militants as a transport and logistics base, because Manbij Pocket is an entrance and exit for foreign fighters from and to Europe.

“It’s significant in that it’s their last remaining funnel” to Europe, a US military official said.

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group, mainly Kurdish YPG militia is taking part in military operations to recapture the Manbij strip. Syrians from the Observatory for Human Rights say that the US Air Force attacks killed 15 civilians.

Important to note, that NATO member Turkey considers the Syrian Kurdish YPG fighters to be terrorists and has been enraged by US supporting for the militia in its battle with IS in Syria. Also, the Turkish military says it has shelled IS targets north of Aleppo in Syria, killing 14 militants.

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