Flags of forces taking part in Euphrates operation
The second stage in the 'Operation Wrath of Euphrates' to liberate the Islamic State's de-facto capital in Syria, Raqqa, has been launched this morning.
Operation Wrath of Euphrates Action Room Spokesperson Cihan Ehmed spoke on their forces' intention to clear the western part of Raqqa from IS groups and to lay siege to the city.
Ehmed said the administration of the city would be carried out by the people of Raqqa following liberation.
The press statement is as follows:
“The first stage of Operation Wrath of Euphrates has been successfully completed. A 700 square kilometer region covering villages, towns and several strategic areas were liberated and the line of defence for the IS gangs to the north of Raqqa has been broken. Our forces have opened secure paths and achieved safe passage to liberated zones for thousands of civilians.
In the SDF's latest meeting it was decided to move on to the second stage of the operation. The goal in this stage is to achieve a siege to the west of the city. 1150 Raqqan Arab fighters trained by the International Coalition will take part in the operation including the Dêrezor Military Council, Teyyar El-Xed El-Sûrî’ye El Nuxbe Forces and new armed forces under Siwar El-Reqa Brigade.
Our coordination with the International Coalition forces also continues. This coordination will be actualised in a stronger manner in the second stage of the operation and it will be carried out with a more result-oriented effort.
On the other hand, following the liberation of the city, it will be ensured that a civilian administration including all sections of society will carry out their duties.
Our call for the people of Raqqa is to stay away from regions with ISIS gangs’ presence until our forces liberate them.
We wholeheartedly thank the people and the clans of Raqqa for aiding us throughout the operation and warmly welcoming us.
We wish for the continued support of our people during the operation and support in clearing Raqqa from ISIS gangs.”
Meanwhile the U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter IS [ISIS/ISIL] Brett McGurk tweeted that 200 U.S. Special Forces would be deployed to Syria to support operations towards Raqqa.