Syrian Democratic Forces, backed by the United States, began their last attack on territory held by the so-called Islamic State on Saturday night.
The Observatory said over 37,000 civilians, including tens of IS militants, have fled the last IS-held pocket to areas controlled by the SDF in the eastern Euphrates area since last December.
SDF spokesman Mustafa Bali told AFP that "the battle has started", following the week-long pause in fighting. Special Operations forces working alongside the SDF fighters will be particularly keen on establishing whether any key Islamic State leaders are still holed up in Baghouz, including perhaps the Islamic State's leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. U.S.
The U.S. military presence in Syria has offered the Kurds a measure of protection against any Turkish offensive.
The aim of the Manbij deal is to ensure security and stability in the province by eliminating YPG terrorists who now control the region in northern Syria and ultimately handing the administration of the province to a body consisting of local people.
In December, Trump declared victory over the Islamic State terror group in war-torn Syria and announced that American forces would be "coming home soon", sparking concern among officials in Washington and allies overseas.
An estimated 500 or so militants remain, along with their families, on the eastern banks of the Euphrates, hemmed in by US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) on the Syrian side of the Iraqi border, and by Iranian-backed Shia militias on the other. Almost 600 ISIS fighters remain inside the two villages that comprise the enclave, and many of them are believed to be foreigners, he said.
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Will You March With Beto Or Rally With Trump On Monday ?
Trump said in his State of the Union address that El Paso's border walls helped it become one of the nation's safest cities. Still, El Paso's crime rate was and is among the lowest for USA cities of its size.
Acting attorney general Matthew Whitaker testifies before House Judiciary Committee
He's an outstanding person. "I do think Trump's gonna position him somewhere else", said Figliuzzi. Those conversations would fall under executive privilege. "Answer the question, please".
Trump is moving ahead with his plan to withdraw 2,000 USA troops from Syria, despite warnings from US military and security experts that militants in Iraq and Syria could prepare an insurgency if USA -led forces back off.
Even as it seems likely to lose every last fragment of its once-vaunted and self-declared caliphate, IS can continue to operate and pose a potent threat in both Syria and Iraq from remote areas where its fighters find refuge, as well as through militants gone to ground in towns and cities.
Merkel's remarks, which came at the inauguration of the Berlin headquarters of Germany's foreign intelligence agency BND, contradict statements by US President Donald Trump that the Islamist group has been defeated.
"Rest assured, we'll do what it takes to defeat every ounce and every last person within the ISIS madness" he said, using another acronym for IS.
Thousands of suspected IS fighters have attempted to blend in with civilians fleeing the jihadists' last bastion, including a large number of foreigners.
He said that when the SDF detects movement from IS fighters, they bomb them, but added: "There have not been any major changes".
Since September, more than 1,270 IS militants, more than 670 SDF fighters, and around 400 civilians have been killed in the fighting, the Observatory says.
"There were heavy clashes this morning, with landmines going off", said Rami Abdel Rahman, the head of the Britain-based war monitor.