The US-backed Kurdish YPG has once again secured a gain in fighting around ISIS-held towns in eastern Syria, reporting on Friday that they have “full control” of the town of Hajin, the largest of the contested towns.
The Kurds have been contesting these towns for months, and this is not the first time they’ve seized Hajin. ISIS fighters are still reported in “small pockets” in and around the city, though the Kurds claim they are optimistic they’ll be finished in a few days.
In the past ISIS has fairly quickly turned the tide after such defeats with counter-offensives, often using inclement weather or other opportunities to quickly reverse the situation. They may have an opportunity coming up.
Turkey has announced their intention to invade northeastern Syria and attack those same Kurdish forces, and in the past that has forced the Kurds to back off ISIS and move to defensible positions further north. This tends to allow ISIS to retake lost ground with less fighting.