Jun 07 2017
Raqqa was among the first cities captured by IS, in January 2014, and has been the home of some of the group's most prominent leaders, including those who planned the November 2015 Paris attacks and other worldwide assaults.
The latest airstrikes come as an alliance of USA -backed Kurdish and Arab fighters prepare to officially launch an all-out attack on Raqqa city.
Dillon said the SDF had encouraged civilians to quit Raqqa to avoid this fate and had set up screening centers on front lines to separate civilian refugees from fleeing fighters.
Meanwhile, other SDF forces are working to fully encircle the provincial capital by advancing from the southwest. Along the city's western edges, Syrian militiamen cleared territory and set up supply routes into the city.
The Observatory said the SDF had captured some buildings in the al-Mushleb area and had also attacked a military barracks, Division 17, on the northern outskirts of Raqqa. Both Turkey and the USA consider the PKK to be a terrorist organization. To the north, the SDF has advanced to within 3 miles of the Raqqa city limits.
The Raqqa campaign commander Rojda Felat said an assault had begun on the al-Mushleb district at the city's south-eastern outskirts, confirming an earlier report by the United Kingdom-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
After six years of fighting, President Bashar Assad has retained control of Syria's five largest cities and its coast.
The offensive will be hard but will deal a decisive blow to the terror group, which has been losing ground over the past year in both Iraq and Syria, said Lt. Gen. Steve Townsend, the coalition commander.
He said once Daesh was defeated in Raqqa and Mosul in neighbouring Iraq, there would still be a lot of hard fighting ahead but reiterated that coalition was strong and committed to the complete annihilation of terrorists in both countries.
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MARTIN: In a minute, I'm going to ask you to tell us about the area, about central London, for people who aren't familiar with it. Police treated injured on the bridge, buildings in the area were evacuated and subway stations in the area shut down.
It prompted the U.S.to parade its forces in Kurdish areas to discourage further conflict.
Washington's decision to back a Kurdish-led force has soured relations with Turkey, a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally, which is battling Kurdish militants within its own borders. The SDF operation to capture Raqqa is called the Wrath of Euphrates.
Turkey, an important North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally, opposes the YPG because it believes the group will later push for a Kurdish homeland that would include Turkish land.
The SDF, whose main component is a Kurdish militia known as the People's Protection Units, or YPG, has been the main recipient of USA support in Syria. The People's Protection Units (YPG), seen as a terrorist organization by Ankara for its links to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), constitutes the backbone of the US -backed SDF. "From the historical resistance of Kobanê to the liberation of Girê Spî, Hawl and Shaddadi, to the villages of Deir ez-Zor and Raqqa, and to the dams in these regions, many historic steps have been taken for the liberation of the people in these regions from the terrorists and the fulfillment of their vital needs within existing resources", the SDF said in a statement. It said they were likely carried out by the US-led coalition.
An estimated 300,000 civilians were believed to have been living under IS rule in Raqa, including 80,000 displaced from other parts of Syria.
He said women and children were among the dead, but he could not immediately give a specific number.
Sello urged civilians inside the city to keep away from IS positions and from the frontlines. But a showdown for the city itself will prove a major test for the coalition, with the potential for high civilian casualties.
The Observatory has given a toll of around 1,500 civilians in Syria alone since the coalition began air assaults on September 23, 2014.
The monitor recorded the coalition's deadliest month for Syrian civilians between April 23 and May 23, with 225 civilians killed.
Jun 06 2017
Ravens Sign Cornerback Al-Hajj Shabazz
Boykin spent time with the Carolina Panthers and Chicago Bears in 2016, but hasn't appeared in a regular-season game since 2015. The move comes four days after Baltimore lost starting cornerback Tavon Young to a season-ending torn ACL.
Jun 06 2017
Hamm extends invitation to girl humiliated at youth tournament
The ruling to disqualify Mili and her Omaha Azzuri Cachorros teammates from the competition obviously left the kiddo "in shock". Her skill on the soccer field? Moments later, Wambach said she would contact the tournament organizers herself.
Jun 03 2017
Goffin retires from match at French Open
Defending champion Garbine Muguruza advanced to the fourth round of the French Open by beating Yulia Putintseva 7-5, 6-2. This was the second retirement of the day after Belgian David Goffin was forced out with an injured right ankle.
Jun 03 2017
Antonio Conte to send Tammy Abraham on loan to Newcastle
Newcastle, Brighton, Everton and Leicester have been alerted to his talents and are all apparently keen on securing his signature. Meanwhile, Abraham is set for a Premier League loan to Newcastle, who are managed by former Chelsea boss Rafa Benitez.
Jun 02 2017
How likely is the General Election to result in a hung parliament?
It's been suggested that if she sat and did nothing until the election then the Tories would get a more favorable result. The 3-point lead by the Conservatives is the narrowest since PM Theresa May has called for the snap election in April.
Jun 02 2017
Private Survey: Companies added a solid 253000 jobs in May
The U.S. central bank said "most" districts had cited worker shortages across a broadening range of occupations and regions. Almost 40 percent of the job cuts were announced by Ford Motor Co, according to the report.
Jun 02 2017
How will the Conor-Floyd boxing match end?
Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao split their pot 60-40 in Mayweather's favor for that highly publicized 2015 fight. The popular MMA fighter hasn't fought as a boxer from the time he fought as mixed martial arts fighter.
Jun 02 2017
"He wants to stay in England" - Mino Raiola on Ibrahimovic's future
And it is understood from sources close to the club that Lukaku is now the man Mourinho wants to spearhead his United attack. Raiola said no talks had been held so far as the striker looks to recover from his injury.
Jun 01 2017
Apple Reportedly Manufacturing Siri Speaker with Surround Sound, But No Screen
The final piece of the puzzle, of course, is to try and lock users further into Apple's ecosystem of products and services. The company also considered including sensors that would measure a room's acoustics and automatically adjust audio levels.
Jun 01 2017
IRL Angel Lorde Congratulates Cashier On New Job W/ Governors Ball Invite
Irrelevant but notable aside: Lorde's new single " Melodrama " is out this Friday, and we have a sneaking suspicion she'll debut it at the GB.
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