UNITED STATES (VOP TODAY NEWS) — On the fringes of the last enclave of the Islamic state in eastern Syria, masked gunmen armed with rifles were seen among the heaviest militants, apparently ready to fight to death.
Thousands of people, including many wives of al-Qaeda militants and their children, have been out of the besieged Baghouz enclave for weeks, forcing Syria’s US-backed democracy forces to delay an attack on the last remaining militant regime.
Reuters television footage of the front line, controlled by the Islamic state, shows armed militants, most of whom have only their eyes, overseeing evacuations from farmland scattered with cars and a few buildings.
Syria’s demobilized forces say the remaining fighters in the midst of the evacuation are the fiercest foreign fighters and the governments of different countries are demanding them and will probably fight to death.
A Reuters witness on Saturday saw dozens of people, mostly men, crossing from territory controlled by the Islamic state to lines controlled by Syria’s democratic forces. The troops said they were wounded fighters from the group.
A few women with veils and children with bags on the front line were seen. A man walking on crutches was also seen.
A 200-meter stretch of land is separated between the positions of the Syrian Democratic Forces and the front line of the Islamic state in the Baghuoz.
The Syrian Democratic Forces check the departing people as soon as they leave and then send them north to the Hull camp, which has difficulty absorbing them as it is already overcrowded with Syrian and Iraqi refugees fleeing the years-old war.
After the militant organization took control of vast tracts of land on both sides of the Iraqi-Syrian border in 2014 and declared a state of succession, many local and foreign forces defeated the hardline organization of the two countries and inflicted major defeats in 2017.
But militants remain a threat. In Iraq, they began to work in secret and launched attacks of murder and kidnapping. In Syria, their comrades are holed up in remote desert areas and carry out bombings in areas controlled by Syria’s democratic forces.
This article is written and prepared by our foreign editors writing for VOP from different countries around the world – edited and published by VOP staff in our newsroom.
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