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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Raging Battle: Why 'Liberation of Raqqa Could Take Months'

Sputnik News

16:03 16.06.2017(updated 17:24 16.06.2017)

The representative of the Kurdish self-defense units (YPG), Nuri Mahmoud in an interview with Sputnik Turkey revealed the details of ongoing operation in Raqqa.

The YPG troops which are a part of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) are taking part in an ongoing operation to liberate the Syrian city of Raqqa from Daesh.

Amid the violent battles, Mahmoud said that the current operation could last for at least several months.

"Currently the SDF troops have not yet reached the central quarters of Raqqa. The operation to liberate the city could last for more than one month because, just as we expected, Daesh is showing a strong resistance," Mahmoud said.

The terrorists have been preparing for this operation. They call Raqqa their de facto 'capital' and so they have dug out tunnels and trenches.

"They have laid many mines and traps all around the city and set up vehicles with explosives devices," the representative said.

However, Mahmoud still feels that the YPG troops and SDF forces will manage to liberate the city sooner or later.

"They have an extensive experience in conducting military operations against Daesh, so the offensive will not break," he said.

The representative also stressed that the operation in Raqqa not be compared with the ongoing one in Iraq's city of Mosul.

"Those who fight against Daesh in Raqqa are the forces that have earlier managed to win over Daesh. The war in Mosul is a technical war. Yes, there are significant forces in Mosul, but there is more active use of military equipment and technology over there," the representative said.

He further said that heavy weaponry that is being used in Mosul inflicts serious damage on Daesh and weakens its position.

However, the main forces that are fighting Daesh in Raqqa are the fighters that have previously managed to eradicate the terrorists in areas starting from Kobani all the way to Raqqa.

"The YPG troops have considerable strength, both from the point of view of their experience and reliability and also from a strategic point of view," Mahmud concluded.

The Russian Defense Ministry stated Friday that the Russian aerospace forces' strike conducted on May 28, allegedly killed Daesh leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi south of Raqqa. The Defense Ministry is still looking into this.

The Daesh leader may have been killed alongside other leaders of the jihadist group and 330 terrorists in a Russian Aerospace Forces strike late last month, the Russian Defense Ministry said Friday.


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