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Syrian Democratic Forces Capture Kabash Gharbi In Raqqah Countryside

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Syrian Democratic Forces Capture Kabash Gharbi In Raqqah Countryside

Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) at the Tabqa Dam last month CREDIT: RODI SAID/REUTERS

On April 16, the Syrian Democratic Force (SDF), supported by the US-led collation, recaptured the village of Kabash Ghribi from ISIS terrorists in the northern Raqqah countryside. Kabash Ghribi was the second village captured by SDF after the group had croossed the Al-Ray water channel.

Meanwhile, SDF fighters repelled an attack by ISIS in Tabqah. Two VBIEDs were destroyed and dozens of ISIS fighters were killed in the failed attack according to a SDF source. The US-led collation’s fighter jets and the US Marines’ artillery units continued to pound ISIS positions in Tabqah and in the Raqqah countryside.

According to an opposition source, SDF fighters are moving large numbers of fighters and military equipment to their new positions in the Al-Eskandaria neighborhood in western Tabqah. It’s expected that SDF will continue its operations in the city soon in order to eliminate ISIS fighters inside and take over the whole city. Earlier this week, SDF fighters entered the ISIS-held city of Tabqah.

In turn, ISIS released a statement that the group had killed many Kurdistan Workers’ Party fighters (this way ISIS describes Kurdish SDF members) after a VBIED targeted them around Tal Al-Saman in the northern Raqqah countryside.

Syrian Democratic Forces Capture Kabash Gharbi In Raqqah Countryside

 

ISIS also said that 2 PKK fighters were killled in an explosion caused by an IED planted by ISIS members. The IED hit an SDF vehicle south of Al-Shadade in the northern Deir Ezzor countryside.

 

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dutchnational

If the SDF is successfull south of the euphrates, they might draw IS fighters away from DeZ, taking some of the pressure off that city.

Bill Wilson

We may see the SDF cross the river north of Deir Azzor at Abu Haamad then start moving out in both directions along the river highway. That should prompt ISIS to send some units to slow the SDF advance and others to Al-Sukhnah to fend off the advancing SAA. Then SDF only has to advance to Mansurah (due east a piece from Tabqa) to block access to the highway that runs south towards Deir Azzor and Al-Sukhnah. Those two moves will completely isolate Raqqa.

dutchnational

Sounds like good tactics. It might be however that the strategy of SDF is to remain as much as possible north of the river so to have a natural border with whomever takes the southern part of the valley.

I do not see the SDF to try to go to DeZ unless they either want to take it for themselves (they already have a military council for that) or if there is an agreement with Assad, which I consider, at this moment, as unlikely.

VGA

They cannot take over DeZ because if any army comes close and starts having success against ISIS, then the DeZ pro-gov defenders will take more and more of the city. And the closer the SDF gets, even more of the city will fall to the SAA.

So any campaign to reach DeZ will result in a SAA victory inside the city.

Jonathan Cohen

And this is a problem? SAA inside DeZ city, SDF outside, ISIS nowhere! SDF could then give passage for SAA to reinforce Daraa.

VGA

But why would the SDF sacrifice fighters just to help the SAA win the city? I don’t know, they seem to have their hands full with Raqqa. That’s a biiig city. If we compare to Mosul …. then it’s going to take quite a while and cost many lives.

Bill Wilson

The SDF is sacrificing lives to eliminate ISIS inside Syria. They have returned Syrian Arab areas, military bases and key infrastructure deep inside their homeland back to the Syrian government. Right now the SDF is concentrating on capturing both dams near Raqqa while slowing moving in on the city. ISIS did withdraw their government and best fighters from Raqqa so there’s no real need to rush into the city unless the inhabitants start a rebellion against ISIS that forces them to take shelter inside their scattered garrisons. I’m sure plenty of the men have kept guns hidden from ISIS plus their open fighting vehicles are easy targets for Molotov cocktails tossed down from windows and rooftops.

VGA

How do you know ISIS have withdrawn their best fighters from Raqqa. I don’t think so, that’s the city they want to hold.

Jonathan Cohen

Why is to control the rest of the region and everywhere now controlled by ISIS, which I believe has significant value; not all wasteland.

Wahid Algiers

Reinforcements of Daraa and Deir Ezzor took place in the meantime. Gains at all fronts of the SAA and its allies. Good jobs guys. And now move on.

Bill Wilson

I guess ISIS in Tabqa finally found out that their former commander was an US spy and are now changing positions after wondering why the aerial and artlllery bombardments have been unusually accurate.

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