Sign In / Up

Add contribution as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment

Comment as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment

Login

Not a member Register   Forgot Password
or connect using
 

Email

 

Rudaw

Syria

ISIS agreed to a forced withdrawal in Tabqa, Coalition

By Rudaw 11/5/2017
A Coalition-partnered anti-ISIS ground fighter looks over Tabqa Dam in northern Syria. Photo: Delil Souleiman | AFP
A Coalition-partnered anti-ISIS ground fighter looks over Tabqa Dam in northern Syria. Photo: Delil Souleiman | AFP

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — A "forced withdrawal" of ISIS fighters contributed to the international anti-ISIS coalition-partnered ground forces retaking of the northern Syrian city of Tabqa on Wednesday, the Coalition has announced.


"In Tabqa, the SDF's increased pressure on ISIS from each flank allowed it to accelerate the pace of the fight, clear the final neighborhoods of the city and isolate Tabqa Dam," the Coalition wrote in a statement on Thursday.  

 

"Approximately 70 ISIS fighters conceded to the SDF's [Syrian Democratic Forces] terms, which included the dismantling of IEDs surrounding the dam, the surrender of all ISIS heavy weapons, and the forced withdrawal of all remaining fighters from Tabqa City," it added.


The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) had reported that some tribes in the Tabqa area mediated a deal last week. The SOHR report stated the ISIS militants were to withdraw from the SDF-held areas into the ISIS-controlled ones, including to Raqqa, the group’s de facto capital in Syria. SOHR has said it relies on local sources on the ground in Syria.

The SDF then denied that a withdrawal had been negotiated.

“All the rumours and circulating news about the liberation of Tabqa and the dam through evacuating the terrorists ... are baseless and far from the reality,” the SDF wrote in a subsequent statement, “compared to the continued battles and intensive clashes both in Sahl Khashab village and the new districts in Tabqa that include the first, second and third districts.”

 

In addition to the strategic significance of Tabqa because of its air field which was retaken by coalition-partnered ground forces on March 27 and the dam, which separates Lake Assad from the Euphrates River, the coalition claims ISIS had moved fighters from its de facto capital in Raqqa to Tabqa.

"After ISIS's defeat in northern Syria, ISIS moved its foreign fighters and external attack planning operations to Tabqah in order to avoid coalition airstrikes within Raqqah," the statement detailed.

The US Special Presidential Envoy for the Coalition has said that the Syrian Arab Coalition (SAC) led the retaking of Tabqa.

"Confirmed: ISIS defeated Tabqa Dam and Tabqa City, now in hands of Syrian Democratic Forces, led by its Syrian Arab Coalition," SPE Brett McGurk tweeted early Thursday morning.

The Coalition stated that retaking the hydroelectric dam "prevented a potential humanitarian disaster, and esnured local citizens will continue to receive the dam's basic services."

US Secretary of Defense James Mattis and Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirm met in a half-hour, closed-door meeting in London on Thursday, where they both were attending a conference on Somalia.

It is the highest-ranking meeting of diplomats from Ankara and Washington since the US authorized the further arming of Coalition ground forces on Tuesday, ahead of the anticipated Raqqa offensive.

"The secretary reiterated US commitment to protecting our NATO ally," read a State Department statement. "Both leaders affirmed their support for peace and stability in both Iraq and Syria."

 

There was no immediate statement from Yildirim's office.

Reuters reported it was told by a US official that the United States was looking to boost intelligence cooperation with Turkey to support its fight against the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

 

Turkey considers the PKK to the same as the Peoples' Protection Units (YPG) in Syria, who are a component of the SDF.

Comments

 
pre-Boomer Marine brat | 11/5/2017
A closed-door meeting in London? ... I'd prefer Mattis hosting Yildirm to a traditional barbecue luncheon on a rural Arkansas hog farm.
Dutchman | 11/5/2017
The few IS rats that survived got permission to go in order to save the dam. A wise decision. They will be killed anyway and it is better to kill them in the desert.

Be Part of Your Rudaw!

Share your stories, photos and videos with Rudaw, and quite possibly the world.

What You Say

Kurdo | 6/23/2017 10:43:35 PM
@Jong Ju, did i upset you? how is it that you are gay and a muslim?
Star Shamsaddin Hamad | 6/25/2017 5:05:51 PM
I'm very happy to this process And thanks to all the people's that created this process , because it's necessary for our society And I'm proud of...
Rudaw Media Network to support anti-smoking campaign
| 20/6/2017 | (7)
Who is Erdogan ? | 6/25/2017 3:40:06 PM
He was not praying for God , he was worshiping Allah the idol of all jihadists who orders him and his vicious likes to kill Kurds and cut the...
Calvin Harrisberg | 6/25/2017 4:37:10 PM
Risk factors for diabetes include being a dictator, murdering kurds and stealing money.
Turkish President Erdogan in good condition after Eid prayer collapse
| 4 hours ago | (4)
Ashur | 6/25/2017 4:22:54 PM
Seems to be a safe haven for people fleeing from IS terror and occupation of North Iraq;
VIDEO: An escape from Iraq's turmoil to the country's serene wetlands
| 3 hours ago | (1)
FAUthman | 6/25/2017 3:32:25 PM
It boils down to which comes first: The referendum then negotiate with Baghdad or negotiate with Baghdad then the referendum. I would pick the first...
FAUthman | 6/25/2017 3:58:12 PM
One more point: What if you convene parliament and parliament votes against carrying out the referendum on Sept. 25 by a substantial vote (very...
‘Tillerson renewed US rejection to the Kurdish referendum’ – Iraqi PM
| 23 hours ago | (14)

Elsewhere on Rudaw

VIDEO: An escape from Iraq's turmoil to the country's serene wetlands 3 hours ago | (1)

VIDEO: An escape from Iraq's turmoil to the country's serene wetlands

Hammar on the Euphrates and Hawez on the Tigress more
Religious committee visits historic mountain in Kurdistan for Ramadan 23 hours ago |

Religious committee visits historic mountain in Kurdistan for Ramadan

It was decided that there was not yet a new moon more
Inspired by slain Peshmerga, Kurdish student aims to bring light to refugees yesterday at 08:30 |

Inspired by slain Peshmerga, Kurdish student aims to bring light to refugees

He has named his project Hujam more
0.703 seconds