Syrian Kurds Seize ISIS Territory in Push Backed by US, Russia

Offensive Focused on Territory East of the Euphrates River

The Kurdish YPG forces have announced substantial gains in eastern Syria’s Deir Ezzor Province, taking new territory along the Iraqi border and east of the Euhprates River away from ISIS.

The territory captured was some of what’s very little remaining ISIS territory in Deir Ezzor, and territory of limited value. It was noteworthy, however, in that both US and Russian forces backed the offensive.

That’s a change, as while previously the Russians have supported the YPG in limited engagements, during the Deir Ezzor offensive the US has been supporting YPG exclusively, while the Russians supported the Syrian government, sort of a rush to seize as much ISIS territory as possible.

In addition to the support of the US and Russia, the Kurds claimed the push was backed by Arab militias in the area. This comes amid Kurdish efforts to set up “civil councils” to rule their portion of Deir Ezzor Province.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.