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Islamic State group defeated in Syria by Syrian Democratic Forces

Fighters from the US-backed Kurdish-Arab alliance raised their yellow flag in Baghouz early today.

SDF fighters fire on IS militant positions in Baghouz.
SDF fighters fire on IS militant positions in Baghouz.
Image: Maya Alleruzzo/PA Images.

THE ISLAMIC STATE group has been defeated in Syria, American-backed forces declared today. 

Kurdish-led forces announced the end of Islamic State’s nearly five-year-old “caliphate” after forcing “diehard” jihadists from their last stronghold in Eastern Syria.

“Syrian Democratic Forces declare total elimination of [the] so-called caliphate and 100% territorial defeat of ISIS,” spokesman Mustefa Bali said in a statement.

Bali said the SDF had taken full control of Baghouz, a small village on the Euphrates where diehard jihadists made a last stand. 

At its height, the Islamic State group ruled a third of both Syria and Iraq, holding millions of people hostage to violent interpretations of Islamic law.

The group carried out large-scale massacres. During a rampage through Iraq’s Sinjar region in 2014, it captured thousands of women and girls from the Yazidi religious minority and forced them into sexual slavery. Many remain missing today. 

The group also used its caliphate as a launchpad for attacks around the globe – including the 2015 assaults in Paris that killed more than 130 people.

Fighters from the US-backed Kurdish-Arab alliance raised their yellow flag in Baghouz early today to celebrate the landmark victory.

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